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Alexander Rossi shows again why he's America's best F1 hope
Alexander Rossi
Today marked the conclusion of the first ever GP3 Series test in Le Castellet, and the mood in the paddock as the teams began packing away was a positive one after two days of hard work.

The on track action was non-stop during the final three hours, with top honors eventually claimed by ART’s Alexander Rossi. He topped the time sheets in three out of the four sessions at Circuit Paul Ricard, an impressive display by the young American who set a final best of 1:20.013.

Rounding out the top three were yesterday afternoon’s quickest man and Rossi’s teammate Esteban Gutierrez, followed by Carlin’s Max Chilton. The three drivers were separated by just 2 tenths of a second, while the top twelve runners were all within 1 second of each other. 

Frédéric Vasseur, Team Principal ART: “This has been a really positive first test session for us, but also for GP3 in general. Our cars have been consistently reliable throughout the two days, and we have covered a significant amount of kilometers, gathering invaluable data to move forward. After watching the cars on track these past two days I think it’s safe to say that we have a great season of racing ahead of us.©©©”

Trevor Carlin, Team Principal Carlin: “It’s been a really encouraging first step for us in the GP3 Series.  We’ve been very impressed with the car; GP3, Dallara and all technical partners have done a fantastic job.  All the feedback from our drivers has been positive; the car is very well balanced with a lot of high speed grip and is very drivable.”

Andreas Jenzer, Team principal Jenzer: ““The drivers were all very happy with the new GP3 car and I believe we have a great car that will be a great driver training tool for those working towards GP2 and F1. It was good to get on track, and we have been impressed by the high standards and professionalism of GP3. With such a new project we were very pleased with the reliability of the car, which lead us to be able to complete our demanding test schedule. It responded well to the changes, and the different Pirelli tire compounds will make certain of exciting racing.”

Bruno Michel, GP3 Series Organizer: "Obviously, I can only be very pleased with how this first official test went: the reliability of the cars has been stellar with an impressive 13,300 kms covered in only two days. This could not have been achieved without the tremendous support of Dallara, Pirelli, Hewland and Oreca. We have definitely started on the right foot: teams and drivers alike have expressed their satisfaction with their first taste of GP3.

On top of the exceptional reliability, the performance of the cars is also already very close to what we can expect during the season. It is nice to see that on the second day, at least ten drivers were closely fighting for the top spot. These young guns look set for an exciting season and we can expect to witness some great racing."

For the next official 2010 GP3 test the Series will be back at Paul Ricard on March 31st – April 01st.

Afternoon session complete results:


1 Alexander Rossi Art Grand Prix 32 1:20.013
2 Esteban Gutierrez Art Grand Prix 55 1:20.089
3 Max Chilton Carlin 28 1:20.257
4 Adriano Buzaid Carlin 65 1:20.366
5 Michael Christensen MW Arden 43 1:20.531
6 Dean Stone man Tech 1 Racing 53 1:20.549
7 Pablo Sanchez Lopez Addax Team 43 1:20.918
8 Nigel Melcher RSC Mucke Motorsport 31 1:20.920
9 Robert Wickens Status GP 35 1:20.920
10 Olivier Oakes Addax Team 27 1:20.975
11 James Jakes Manor Racing 35 1:20.997
12 Luiz Razia Manor Racing 31 1:21.015
13 Miki Morass MW Arden 42 1:21.101
14 Alexander Sims Altech CRS GP 65 1:21.141
15 Nico Muller Jenzer Motorsport 46 1:21.148
16 Mirko Bortolotti Addax Team 35 1:21.284
17 Leonardo Curdier MW Arden 42 1:21.290
18 Simon Trimmer Jenzer Motorsport 52 1:21.460
19 Rio Haryanto Manor Racing 33 1:21.613
20 Daniel Morad Status GP 24 1:21.690
21 Renger Van der Zande RSC Mucke Motorsport 48 1:21.735
22 Carlos Munoz RSC Mucke Motorsport 20 1:21.778
23 Pal Virag Jenzer Motorsport 44 1:21.825
24 Luca Forest Carlin 41 1:21.869
25 Kazimieras Vasiliauskas Tech 1 Racing 26 1:21.869
26 Pedro Nunes Art Grand Prix 38 1:22.197
27 Vittorio Ghirelli Altech CRS GP 51 1:22.592
28 Viktor Jensen Altech CRS GP 47 1:22.718
29 Doru Sechelariu Tech 1 Racing 17 1:23.118
30 Ivan Lukashevich Status GP 39 1:23.525

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