The GP2 Series will introduce the Drag Reduction System (DRS) to their cars from the 2015 season onwards, with the intention to make the series more in line with Formula 1.
GP2 will use the same system as implemented on F1 cars, with the same detection and activation lines, with drivers able to activate DRS when within a second of the driver in front as in Formula 1.
“We’ve always said that GP2 was able to produce some amazing races without the addition of DRS or any other devices, and once again the 2014 season has proved that with some close racing and exciting on-track battles,” said GP2 Series CEO Bruno Michel. “However, we also have to make sure that we keep in line with our mission statement: preparing the drivers for the next step, Formula One.
“The next generation car will be introduced in 2017 and our current chassis is already four years old. But, it is important to keep adding modifications – at a reasonable cost – that will slightly tweak the technical features of our car. Formula One is constantly evolving. It is impossible for GP2 to remain with the same car over a long period of time when its philosophy is to prepare the drivers for F1.
“Bearing this in mind, we thought that DRS was the best technical development to introduce and we discussed it with the teams over a year ago. They were all in favour of it as they felt it would make GP2 even more attractive to the drivers, but only if it was an identical system to the one used in F1. It is well known that some of the circuits on the calendar are renowned to be difficult in terms of overtaking opportunities – even for GP2. DRS will be an added value on those tracks.
“It is imperative that the device we introduce is exactly the same DRS as the one used in Formula One. We decided to add it to our cars in order to prepare the drivers for the next step.”
With costs a major talking point of motorsport, including within the GP2 Series, Michel insisted the teams had been informed that the addition of DRS would see a minimal increase in expenditure.
“When we discussed this with the teams over a year ago, they told us that the drivers who they are in contact with were eager to see DRS on the GP2 cars,” said Michel. “So we evaluated the feasibility of it, and we could have introduced it last year, but we decided not to for economic reasons.
“We took the time to investigate ways to introduce it for a minimal cost, as our goal remains to keep on supporting our teams. The cost-cutting plan put in place this year will continue for next season in order to make sure that the introduction of DRS will not affect the teams.”
The DRS will be tested on the GP2 Series development car in Europe during October and again in the Middle East during December. The teams will receive the DRS kit in January.