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Teams gather in Abu Dhabi for pre-season testing

The GP2 teams are setting up in the paddock at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi ahead of the start of this week's three-day pre-season test session.
With the start of the 2014 GP2 Series season just a little over three weeks away, the 13 teams involved in this year's championship are getting ready for the first of two vital pre-season test sessions.

This week the three-day test takes place at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, and in many cases it's the first chance that newly signed drivers such as Artem Markelov (Russian Time), Takuya Izawa (ART), André Negrao (Arden) and Kimiya Sato (Campos Racing) will have had to get used to their new cars under proper race conditions.

Currently all but three race seats have been confirmed for 2014, with Felipe Nasr's re-signing at Carlin and confirmation that Stefano Coletti will be making a title bid with Racing Engineering the most recent announcements over the weekend.

That leaves a seat each at MP Motorsport, Trident and Venezuela GP Lazarus still to be filled, but for this week's test the teams have signed up Jon Lancaster, Axcil Jefferies and Conor Daly respectively.

Lancaster is a relatively old hand at GP2, having spent most of 2013 with Hilmer Motorsport which saw him pick up two sprint race wins at Silverstone and the Nurburgring as well as an additional feature race podium at Catalunya.

Daly is also familiar with the current Dallara car used by the series, having made his race début with Hilmer at least year's season opener in Malaysia. Daly also went on to compete in the prestigious Indianapolis 500 before spending most of his year back in the GP3 Series with ART.

But Axcil Jefferies will be making his first appearance in the series, the 19-year-old from Zimbabwe has been racing in kart series in Europe since 2007 and has competed in Formula BMW and Formula 2 before making two apeparances in the Firestone Indy Lights Series in the US in 2013 with Bryan Herta Autosport.

The three teams will make an announcement about their selection of race drivers for this year's GP2 championship nearer the start of the season, which gets underway in Bahrain on April 4.

This week's test starts on Tuesday at 9am local time, with the morning session running until midday and then an afternoon session starting at 2pm after a two-hour lunch break, concluding at 5pm. Wednesday and Thursday will see similar schedules.

Pirelli have selected two different compounds for these three days, the medium (prime) and the supersoft (option). Each driver will be supplied with five sets of prime and two sets of option tyres for the week.

Abu Dhabi test line up

#01 Mitch Evans (NZL) - Russian Time
#02 Artem Markelov (RUS) - Russian Time
#03 Felipe Nasr (BRA) - Carlin
#04 Julian Leal (COL) - Carlin
#05 Raffaele Marciello (ITA) - Racing Engineering
#06 Stefano Coletti (MON) - Racing Engineering
#07 Jolyon Palmer (GBR) - DAMS
#08 Stéphane Richelmi (MON) - DAMS
#09 Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) - ART Grand Prix
#10 Takuya Izawa (JAP) - ART Grand Prix
#11 Daniel Abt (GER) - Hilmer Motorsport
#12 Facu Regalia (ARG) - Hilmer Motorsport
#14 Adrian Quaife-Hobbs (GBR) - Rapax
#15 Simon Trummer (SUI) - Rapax
#16 Rene Binder (AUT) - Arden International
#17 André Negrao (BRA) - Arden International
#18 Rio Haryanto (INA) - EQ8 Caterham Racing
#19 Alexander Rossi (USA) - EQ8 Caterham Racing
#20 Daniiel De Jong (NED) - MP Motorsport
#21 Jon Lancaster * (GBR) - MP Motorsport
#22 Axcil Jefferies * (ZIM) - Trident
#23 Johnny Cecotto (VEN) - Trident
#24 Nathanaël Berthon (FRA) - Venezuela GP Lazarus
#25 Conor Daly * (USA) - Venezuela GP Lazarus
#26 Arthur Pic (FRA) - Campos Racing
#27 Kimiya Sato (JAP) - Campos Racing

* denotes driver not currently signed for forthcoming season



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Oliver Rowland (GBR, Marussia Manor Racing) during the second day of post-season testing at Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on Wednesday November 6, 2013. (World Copyright: Sam Bloxham/LAT Photographic.)
Oliver Rowland (GBR, Marussia Manor Racing) during the first day of post-season testing at Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on November 5, 2013. (World Copyright: Sam Bloxham/LAT Photographic.)
Raffaele Marciello (ITA, Trident Racing) during the second day of post-season testing at Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on Wednesday November 6, 2013. (World Copyright: Sam Bloxham/LAT Photographic.)
Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) in action at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Raffaele Marciello (ITA, Racing Engineering) in pit lane at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Zak Mauger/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Raffaele Marciello (ITA, Racing Engineering) in action at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stefano Coletti (MON, Racing Engineering) in action at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Zak Mauger/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stefano Coletti (MON, Racing Engineering) in action at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Pierre Gasly (FRA, EQ8 Caterham Racing) in pit lane at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
The car of Pierre Gasly (FRA, EQ8 Caterham Racing) is retrieved after a first lap accident at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Zak Mauger/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Rio Haryanto (INA, EQ8 Caterham Racing) in action at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Zak Mauger/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Rio Haryanto (INA, EQ8 Caterham Racing) in action at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Zak Mauger/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) crosses the line at the end of race 2 at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) celebrates in parc ferme after race 2 at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) celebrates in parc ferme after race 2 at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Zak Mauger/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) celebrates with team mate Stephane Richelmi (MON, DAMS) celebrates after race 2 at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) celebrates with his father Jonathan after race 2 at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Race winner Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) & runner-up Stefano Coletti (MON, Racing Engineering) celebrate with champagne after race 2 at the Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. Sunday 7 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)

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