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Status GP Estoril GP3 Test Day 2 Report
Posted by: newsla on Mar 28, 2014 - 05:36 PM
GP2 News
Status GP Estoril GP3 Test Day 2 Report

Status Grand Prix completed the opening test of the GP3 Series season at Estoril with Nick Yelloly comfortably in the top 10 in both Friday sessions.


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The British driver, as he did in the opening day of the test on Thursday, temporarily topped the times in the morning session, after having a new set of Pirelli P Zero slicks fitted as the track dried following overnight rain.

He dropped to fifth by the end of the morning as others improved when they fitted additional sets of new tyres towards the end of the session.

Yelloly was joined in the Status GP line-up by Roberto Merhi – his first day in a GP3 car since 2010 – and Alfonso Celis Jr. All three simultaneously featured in the top five when the track was at its wettest.

In the afternoon, Yelloly again went quickest on a track greasy from drizzle early on, with Merhi in third place. With heavier rain threatening, the team had elected to fit new tyres, but the weather held off. Spaniard Merhi, however, had no further new Pirellis available from his car's allocation over the course of the two-day test.

Yelloly, who is managed by MB Partners, then focused on working on different set-ups, and finished the afternoon session in ninth position.

DTM Mercedes driver Merhi, the 2011 Formula 3 Euro Series champion, provided excellent feedback to improve the handling of his car. He continued to improve on well-worn tyres, indicating that with a new set he would have leapt up the timesheets.

Mexican Celis was hampered by traffic in the morning but once again continued to make very good progress in his debut GP3 test. The 17-year-old made a strong improvement in the afternoon to lap just over one second adrift of what was the pace at the time.

The next test takes place on April 10/11 at the Spanish circuit of Jerez.

Driver quotes:

Nick Yelloly
“We just used today as a test session, without necessarily going for outright pace. We were trying a lot of things to see if we could gain some extra performance. Unfortunately this afternoon we went the wrong way on set-up, but that’s what testing is all about. We know from yesterday that our base car is good, so we’ll just start again in the next test at Jerez and try more things.”

Roberto Merhi
“We were quick straight away in the wet and in the dry, which was really good. It was a shame that we didn’t have tyres available in the afternoon to improve. We made some real steps on old tyres, which could not be seen in the overall times, but it was a good test.”

Alfonso Celis Jr
“It was another good day. We stayed away from trouble and on-track, which is important. I was improving more and more, getting closer all the time – but so was everyone else, so the times are very close! Everyone has more experience and I’m not far away from them, so I’m pretty pleased.”

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