Since its inception the GP2 Series was designed to reflect five core values: performance, cost control, entertainment, safety and preparation. The sporting and technical regulations are the blueprint of the championship and are only changed if the proposed modifications fit into the template formed by these values, which remain the guiding principles of the GP2 Series.
GP2 laptimes are highly competitive with the final few rows on the F1 grid, proving that there isn't another junior formula which can match the performance levels of the GP2 Series. Engines which provide over 612bhp, plus ground effects and proper slick tyres make the GP2 cars powerful and tricky beasts to handle.
Operating at about 1% of the cost of running a Formula One team, GP2 Series teams nevertheless race on the same tracks, on the same weekends, for the same audience and offer very impressive racing for the crowd and the F1 paddock to enjoy. With centralised purchasing, strict limits on testing and an outright ban on individual developments costs are kept in check, while modifications are made with an eye on how they will affect the price structure for the teams.
By far GP2's biggest selling point is the excitement its races provide for the fans. With two races per weekend, reverse grids, compulsory pitstops, Prime and Option tyres and 22 identical cars on display, the series never fails to enthral and entertain.
Racing at speeds very close to F1, safety is of course the highest priority. The GP2/11 car has passed every one of the stringent F1 FIA crash tests, and includes anti-intrusion panels, while wearing the HANS device is also compulsory. The series has a dedicated commitment to safety, which has been borne out over the last six years.
The record speaks for itself: there has never been an F1 feeder category as successful as the GP2 Series. In 2016, the F1 grid was made up of ten GP2 graduates, including five Champions, with two (Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg) going all the way to the top, earning four Formula 1 World Championships between them (2008, 2014, 2015 and 2016). There can be no finer testimonial to the benefit of the training the series provides to young drivers than that.