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GP2 Series
GP2Series Logo.svg
Category Single seaters
Country or region International
Inaugural season 2005
Drivers 26
Teams 13
Constructors Dallara
Engine suppliers Renault
Tyre suppliers Bridgestone
Drivers' champion Germany Nico Hülkenberg
Teams' champion France ART Grand Prix
Official website gp2series.com
Motorsport current event.svg Current season

The GP2 Series, GP2 for short, is a form of open wheel motor racing introduced in 2005 following the discontinuation of the long-term Formula One feeder series, Formula 3000. The format was conceived by Bernie Ecclestone and Flavio Briatore,[1] while Ecclestone also has the rights to the name GP1.[2] In 2010 the GP3 Series class will be launched, as a feeder class for the GP2 series.[3]

Designed to make racing affordable for the teams and to make it the perfect training ground for life in Formula One, GP2 has made it mandatory for all of the teams to use the same chassis, engine and tyre supplier so that true driver ability is reflected. All but three races have taken place as support races at Formula One race weekends to boost the series' profile, to give drivers experience on the Grand Prix environment, and to take advantage of the infrastructure (marshalls, medical facilities etc) in place for a Formula One event. GP2 visited the Bahrain International Circuit in 2005 and 2007; all other races were held in European circuits.

Many drivers have used GP2 as a stepping stone into Formula One. The 2005 Champion Nico Rosberg was hired by the Williams team for the 2006 F1 campaign, 2006 GP2 winner Lewis Hamilton made the transition to F1 the following year with McLaren and the 2007 Champion Timo Glock to Toyota for the 2008 F1 season. 2009 GP2 champion Nico Hulkenberg will be moving up to a Williams F1 race driver in the 2010 Formula 1 season. In addition, all runners up—Heikki Kovalainen (2005), Nelson Piquet, Jr. (2006) and Lucas di Grassi (2007)—became Renault test drivers the following year. All three have since graduated to Formula One race seats.

Contents

GP2 Series cars

The GP2 Series car is used by all of the teams, and features a Dallara chassis powered by a V8 Renault engine and Bridgestone tyres.

Chassis
The 2009 specification GP2 Car has been designed by Dallara Automobili. The 2006 GP2 car features a biplane rear wing, with the triplane rear wing used in previous seasons only to be used at the Monaco race. The front upper and lower wishbones have been reinforced, as have the front and rear suspension uprights.
Engine
The 4 litre Renault V8 engine features internal, cartographic and software upgrades designed to improve performance and fuel consumption. The engine produces about 580 hp (432.5 kW).
Gearbox
The 2009 gearbox has been manufactured by GearTek and features an 8-position barrel with ratchet body and software upgrades as well as a new transverse shafts fixing system designed to facilitate improved gear selection.
Tyres
Bridgestone is the single tyre supplier for the GP2 Series. Although grooved dry tyres were used when the series started in 2005, regulations changed in 2006 in favour of slick tyres, and have been continued to be used.
Bridgestone is supplying three slick tyre compounds for racing on dry (soft, medium and hard), as well as a wet specification. The choice of tyre being raced is made jointly by the manufacturer and the GP2 Series organizers prior to each event.
Other parts
Brembo is supplying monobloc brake calipers and disc bells, which are exclusive to GP2.
The car also features internal cooling upgrades, a new water radiator, radiator duct, oil/water heat exchanger, modified oil degazer, new oil and water pipes and new heat exchanger fixing brackets.
Performance
According to research and pre-season stability tests, the 2005 model can go 0 to 200 km/h (124 mph) in 6.7 seconds. The car has a top speed of 320 km/h (198 mph) meaning that it is the fastest single seater racing car bar Formula One and Indy cars. The cars are predicted to be reliable and should run within less than ten seconds per lap of the typical Formula One car.
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Specifications

A typical GP2 Series car (driven by Bruno Senna), during 2008 season at Silverstone.

Race weekend

On Friday, drivers have a 30-minute free practice session and a 30-minute qualifying session. The qualifying session decides the grid order for Saturday's race which has a length of 180 kilometres.

During Saturday's race, each driver has to make a pit stop in which at least two tyres have to be changed.

On Sunday there is a sprint race of 120 kilometres. The grid is decided by the Saturday result with top 8 being reversed, so the driver who finished 8th on Saturday will start from pole position and the winner will start from 8th place.

Point system

  • Pole for Saturday races: 2 points
Point system for race 1
 1st   2nd   3rd   4th   5th   6th   7th   8th 
10 8 6 5 4 3 2 1
Point system for race 2
 1st   2nd   3rd   4th   5th   6th 
6 5 4 3 2 1
  • Fastest lap: 1 point in each race. Driver recording fastest lap has to drive 90% of race laps. The driver must now also start the race from his allocated grid position and as of 2008 must finish in the top ten of the race to be eligible for the fastest lap point.

With this points system, the most number of points anyone can score in one round is 20 by claiming pole position, winning both races with the fastest lap in each race. This feat has only been achieved twice in GP2 Racing's short history. By Brazilian Nelson Piquet, Jr. in the 9th round of the 2006 season in Hungary and by German Nico Hülkenberg in the 5th round of the 2009 season in Germany.

Champions

Season Champion Second Third Team Champion
2005 Germany Nico Rosberg (ART Grand Prix) Finland Heikki Kovalainen United States Scott Speed France ART Grand Prix
2006 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton (ART Grand Prix) Brazil Nelson Piquet, Jr. France Alexandre Prémat France ART Grand Prix
2007 Germany Timo Glock (iSport International) Brazil Lucas di Grassi Italy Giorgio Pantano United Kingdom iSport International
2008 Italy Giorgio Pantano (Racing Engineering) Brazil Bruno Senna Brazil Lucas di Grassi Spain Barwa International Campos Team
2009 Germany Nico Hülkenberg (ART Grand Prix) Russia Vitaly Petrov Brazil Lucas di Grassi France ART Grand Prix

Seasons

2005

The 2005 Season was the first of the series, it succeeding the now defunct Formula 3000 championship. Arden International won the last F3000 titles, thus starting as one of the favourites.

The 2005 season began on April 23, 2005 on the weekend of the San Marino Grand Prix at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari in Imola, Italy. In the pre-season test to decide the inaugural season's car numbers, the iSport International and HiTech/Piquet Racing teams showed a competitive edge. The latter team is largely funded by the former Formula One world champion Nelson Piquet in order to aid his son's route to the premier Formula sport.

The championship lasted 23 rounds, two races occurring a weekend with the exception of a single race in Monaco. It was won by German Nico Rosberg, who was subsequently hired by the WilliamsF1 Team.

2006

The 2006 Season was the second of the series. After championship holder Nico Rosberg's move to the WilliamsF1 team, and runner-up Heikki Kovalainen's move to be reserve driver at Renault F1, Nelson Piquet, Jr. in the Piquet Sports car was installed as the early title favourite, though the ART Grand Prix cars of Alexandre Prémat and Lewis Hamilton also had fairly short odds, given ART were reigning champions.

For the first time, the season began on a calendar separate to the 2006 Formula One calendar, starting out at the Circuit de Valencia, in Valencia, Spain on April 8, 2006 with Piquet, Jr. the first victor.

Piquet raced into an early lead, before Lewis Hamilton came back into the foray. A dominant run by the Briton took him into the championship lead, before the balance came back into Piquet Jr.'s favour.

After an exciting championship battle lasting 20 races, Hamilton claimed the title in the penultimate race, at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza, in Monza, Italy, and celebrated with a second place in the 21st and final round.

2007

The 2007 GP2 Series season began on 13 April at the Bahrain International Circuit, and completed on 30 September at the Circuit de Valencia. Eventual champion Timo Glock was a driving force throughout the series, but came under stiff competition from Lucas di Grassi in the closing stages- however, with a convincing win at the last race in Valencia, Glock sealed the championship.

2008

The 2008 GP2 Series season featured the same teams as in previous seasons.[4] It was the first season to feature a new car design from Dallara, the GP2/08, the only non-F1 car to pass the 2007 FIA crash test in full.[5] In the United Kingdom, the 2008 GP2 Series season was exclusively aired on ITV4[6] from April 2008. It was won by Giorgio Pantano for Racing Engineering, with Bruno Senna finishing distant runner-up.

2009

The 2009 season began and ended on the Iberian peninsula, with the first race weekend at Circuit de Catalunya (9-10 May) and ending in the stand-alone headline event (i.e. not supporting a corresponding Formula One event) at Portugal's Autódromo Internacional do Algarve (19-20 September). The title was won by German rookie Nico Hülkenberg at the penultimate round of the championship at Monza, the first time the series had been won before the final round.

Television rights

The television rights are held by the Formula One Management, which also manages the rights to Formula One. In the UK, races were being shown on Setanta Sports until the channel ceased broadcasting in June 2009.[7] Setanta took up coverage of the series from ITV, who had shown GP2 in all four seasons to date (highlights only for 2005-2007, live coverage for 2008). However, by the German GP, Setanta UK had gone into administration so UK viewers could have been left without a GP2 broadcaster, but British Eurosport subsequently picked up the UK rights to GP2 for the next two and a half years.[8] Setanta Ireland continues to operate for the Irish market and retain GP2 rights for that country. The races are also broadcast in Canada and USA on SPEED channel before the Formula One races, while in Brazil it's broadcast by cable TV channel SportTV; at the rest of Latin America, the races are shown at Fox Sports. About other European countries: In Spain, races are broadcasted by Popular TV , La Sexta and TV3. In Germany PayTV Channel Sky broadcast all races Live and in Finland Pay-TV-channel MTV3 MAX broadcasts all races and qualifying live, the same level of coverage is provided in Italy by Sky Italia; in this country, Rai Due broadcasts the morning race.

See also

References

External links

Awards
Preceded by
SAFER barrier
Autosport
Pioneering and Innovation Award

2005
Succeeded by
Audi R10

Simple English

GP2 Series
Category Single seaters
Country or region International
Inaugural season 2005
Drivers 26
Teams 13
Constructors Dallara
Engine suppliers Renault
Tyre suppliers Bridgestone
Drivers' champion Pastor Maldonado
Teams' champion ART Grand Prix
Official website gp2series.com

The GP2 Series, GP2 for short, is a form of open wheel motor racing. GP2 was started in 2005 after the Formula 3000 was stopped. The format was conceived by Bernie Ecclestone and Flavio Briatore,[1] while Ecclestone also has the rights to the name GP1.[2] In 2010 the GP3 Series class was launched, as a feeder class for the GP2 series.[3]

GP2 was designed to be an affordable racing series and a training series for Formula One. GP2 requires all of the teams to use the same chassis, engine and tyre supplier. Almost all races have taken place as support races on Formula One race weekends. Many drivers have used GP2 as a stepping stone into Formula One.

Contents

GP2 Series cars

The GP2 Series car is used by all of the teams, and features a Dallara chassis powered by a V8 Renault engine and Bridgestone tyres.

The 4 L Renault V8 engine features design and software upgrades designed to improve performance and fuel consumption. The engine produces about 580 hp (432.5 kW). GP2 Series engines are rev-limited to 10,000 rpm.

Bridgestone supplying three slick tyre compounds for racing on dry (soft, medium and hard). They also provide a wet weather tyre. The choice of tyre to be raced is made by the Bridgestone and the GP2 Series organizers prior to each event.

Brembo supplies the brakes.

Race weekend

On Friday, drivers have a 30-minute practice session and a 30-minute qualifying session. The qualifying session decides the grid order for Saturday's race which has a length of 180 kilometers.

During Saturday's race, each driver has to make a pit stop in which at least two tyres have to be changed.

On Sunday there is a sprint race of 120 km. The grid is decided by the Saturday result with top 8 being reversed, so the driver who finished 8th on Saturday will start from pole position and the winner will start from 8th place.

Point system

  • Pole for Saturday races: 2 points
Point system for race 1
 1st   2nd   3rd   4th   5th   6th   7th   8th 
10 8 6 5 4 3 2 1
Point system for race 2
 1st   2nd   3rd   4th   5th   6th 
6 5 4 3 2 1
  • Fastest lap: 1 point in each race. Driver recording fastest lap has to drive 90% of race laps. The driver must now also start the race from his allocated grid position and as of 2008 must finish in the top ten of the race to be eligible for the fastest lap point.

With this points system, the most number of points anyone can score in one round is 20 by claiming pole position, winning both races with the fastest lap in each race. This has only been achieved twice in GP2 Racing's short history. By Brazilian Nelson Piquet, Jr. in the 9th round of the 2006 season in Hungary and by German Nico Hülkenberg in the 5th round of the 2009 season] in Germany.

Champions

SeasonChampionSecondThirdTeam Champion
2005 Nico Rosberg (ART Grand Prix) Heikki Kovalainen Scott Speed ART Grand Prix
2006 Lewis Hamilton (ART Grand Prix) Nelson Piquet, Jr. Alexandre Prémat ART Grand Prix
2007 Timo Glock (iSport International) Lucas di Grassi Giorgio Pantano iSport International
2008 Giorgio Pantano (Racing Engineering) Bruno Senna Lucas di Grassi Barwa International Campos Team
2009 Nico Hülkenberg (ART Grand Prix) Vitaly Petrov Lucas di Grassi ART Grand Prix
2010 Pastor Maldonado (Rapax) TBA TBA TBA

Drivers graduated to F1

2005 Nico Rosberg Heikki Kovalainen  Scott Speed
2006 Lewis Hamilton Nelson Piquet, Jr. 
2007 Timo Glock Kazuki Nakajima 
2008 Bruno Senna  Sébastien Buemi
2009 Nico Hülkenberg Vitaly Petrov Lucas di Grassi Romain Grosjean  Kamui Kobayashi  Karun Chandhok
2009 Sergio Pérez[4]

Drivers are listed by their last year in GP2 Series. Usually they started in F1 at the start of the following season.
= graduated to F1 later
= started in F1 mid-season

Note: Timo Glock had four Grand Prix starts in 2004, drove in GP2 Series in 2006-07 before moving to F1 in 2008.

See also

References

  1. Spurgeon, Brad (2005-06-01). "Formula One experiments with its minor league". The International Herald Tribune: p. 22. 
  2. http://www.grandprix.com/ns/ns15388.html grandprix.com August 11, 2005
  3. http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/71098 autosport.com October 3, 2008
  4. "Sauber land Sergio Perez for 2011 Formula 1 season". news.bbc.co.uk. BBC Sport. 2010-10-04. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/motorsport/formula_one/9059645.stm. Retrieved 2010-10-04. 

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