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, no electronic gizmos such as traction control or power steering, 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 and 26 identical cars on display, the series never fails to enthral and entertain.
The record speaks for itself: there has never been an F1 feeder category as successful as the GP2 Series. In 2014, almost half of the F1 grid is again made up of GP2 graduates: there can be no finer testimonial to the benefit of the training the series provides to young drivers than that.
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 four years.
As one of the five core values of the GP2 Series, the safety of our drivers is of paramount importance. Each of our new cars which include the latest specification anti-intrusion panels are subjected to the comprehensive FIA F1 crash tests, and must pass this stringent analysis before the teams are allowed to take delivery of the new vehicle. The series organisers work closely with our design partner Dallara Automobili to make sure that chassis rigidity and safety is of the highest standard, and this work has been ratified every time one of our drivers has safely returned to the paddock after an accident.