Three more drivers have been confirmed for the 2013 GP3 Series all in quick succession.
First to be confirmed was the 21-year-old Cypriot, Tio Ellinas. Ellinas will be returning to GP3 for a second season with Marussia Manor Racing, the GP3 Series team that is part of the Marussia F1 Team Young Driver Programme. Ellinas fought his way to 8th in the Drivers’ Championship last season and as a reward for being the highest placed Marussia Manor GP3 Driver of 2012 he will also be provided with the opportunity to get his first taste of Formula 1 machinery at the Marussia F1 Team Young Driver Test later this year.
Ellinas commented: “I am delighted that I will be returning with Marussia Manor Racing for a second season. The new GP3 car is fantastic to drive and I think the racing will be very exciting and highly competitive. After a strong end to the season in 2012 and a good winter test programme, I head to the first race at Barcelona full of confidence. It is going to be an interesting season.”
The second man announced will also be a returnee to the series. American Conor Daly will enter his second GP3 season also with the team he competed with last year, ART Grand Prix. Daly achieved 6th in the Drivers’ last year and was working on the new car for the team during winter testing where he posted the 3rd and 4th best times at the Barcelona and Silverstone circuits.
Following his one GP2 weekend in Malaysia this year, Daly explained: “I am very much looking forward to being back with ART Grand Prix again. Their history in the junior levels is impressive and I want to add to their legacy. Testing went well and the new car is so much better than before. I can’t wait for Barcelona.”
Finally brand new GP3 outfit, Bamboo Engineering, have signed up British Singaporean Melville McKee for their maiden season. McKee has completed a number of tests with the Silverstone based outfit, performing particularity well during the final test in Silverstone. Grabbing the headlines by ranking 5th overall on the first days timesheets, he had been first on the timesheets half way through the second session and showed real pace throughout.
McKee said: “It’s great to sign with Bamboo, I’ve had a series of successful runs in the car and am particularly impressed with the team and their experience. The teams professionalism and breadth of experience are what attracted me most and I cant wait to get on the track and competing.”