Silverstone is on for FR 3.5!

FR 3.5
For a long time, there have been questions about the presence of Silverstone in the World Series by Renault calendar this year. A round had been declared for 25th-26th August, but with no location given. Was the track to be left off the calendar? It seemed even more likely with the WEC’s 6 Hours of Silverstone set for that weekend.
However, today it was revealed that Formula Renault 3.5 will be supporting the WEC event that weekend, which is great news for British fans who can go and see Sam Bird, Nick Yelloly and other great drivers. It remains to be seen whether the series will be able to offer free tickets as they have done in the past, but I hope so!

Eurocup
Formula Renault Eurocup, which will not be present at Silverstone, is testing for two days at Paul Ricard. There’s a huge number of drivers who are going to be there, and you can follow the progress on the WSR Twitter account @WSR_Live.

F2
According to F2 commentator Jack Nicholls, drivers are set to be announced over the next few weeks. He said, “Some interesting drivers are set to be announced for #F2 in the coming weeks. It’s going to be a very competitive season.” (@Jack_Nicholls) The first test is coming up at Silverstone on March 26th.

GP2
The teams get back to work tomorrow with three days at the Circuit de Catalunya. Many of the drivers were already out at the track, either with F1 teams or just to watch testing before they have their own turn. Giancarlo Serenelli (winner of the (South American) Latam Challenge Series and third in the SEAT Leon Super Cup Mexico) will be with Lazarus, Jon Lancaster – who had a brief spell in F2 last year – will be with Ocean, Sergio Canamasas and former Caterham test driver Ricardo Teixeira will be with Rapax.

F1
Marussia launched their smooth-nosed MR01 today at Silverstone. The car is not yet ready to race, still with crash tests to pass despite the first race being 13 days away! HRT also launched at Barcelona, with Narain Karthikeyan driving the few laps allowed. Pedro de la Rosa was also there, of course, as was former HRT driver Tonio Liuzzi. The HRT’s livery is fantastic – white, gold and maroon. In the end, livery doesn’t get you points, but the fact that their car is ready before FP1 is a real step up for the Spanish outfit despite a troubled winter.

Pole for Bortolotti and Vergne

I completely overslept this morning! Anyway, championship leader Mirko Bortolotti is on pole for the F2 race this afternoon. That’s his second of the season, having taken pole in the first round at Silverstone. Second is Romanian Mihai Marinescu, which is his best of the season so far. Third is Will Bratt, who took the pole at the second Spa race and is currently fourth in the championship. In fourth is Alex Brundle, who had a rough weekend at Spa and is only sixth in the championship and 60 points behind Bortolotti.
Christopher Zanella took a disappointing seventh, while the suberb 17-year-old rookie Jordan King again managed the top 10 to start 9th. He’ll be one to watch in the future. And by the future I mean this afternoon.

In Formula Renault 3.5, pole was taken by Jean-Eric Vergne for Carlin. The French driver struggled at the last race with a retirement in the first round, and is joint second in the championship 30 points behind teammate Wickens.
Second and third are both surprises. Spaniard Sergio Canamasas is 18th in the championship, and his best finish is 8th. But he’s in P2. Russian Daniil Move is 11th in the championship with a best finish of third but mostly low finishes. He starts P3. In fourth is Brendon Hartley, fifth is Alexander Rossi, and Daniel Ricciardo – 43 points behind Wickens with 8 races to go – qualifies sixth. Can he really make up for missing out on the first race? Wickens starts 11th.