This time Racing Engineering will be running three drivers
For the final time in 2012 the GP2 teams will be out on the track for the second and last of the post-season tests which will be held at the Jerez de la Frontera circuit on the 22nd and 23rd of November.
Nigel Melker, who will be running on both days of the test, was born in Rotterdam 21 years ago and raced in Formula Renault 2.0 before moving up to GP3 in 2010 where he immediately showed his pace with two pole positions. In 2011 he was one of the fastest drivers finishing 3rd in the Series with six podiums including a win in the Turkish Feature Race as well as setting two fastest laps. Nigel also competed in the 2011 F3 Euroseries finishing 4th with four wins, two pole positions, nine podiums and two fastest laps.
In 2012, his first season of GP2 racing, Nigel took several top ten places with a best finish of 4th in the Silverstone Feature Race driving for the Ocean Racing Technology team. Additionally Nigel raced for Lotus in the World Series by Renault at the Silverstone round finishing 3rd in Race 1.
The young Dutchman had his first outing in a Racing Engineering car at the previous post-season test held at Barcelona three weeks ago. Nigel drove for the Spanish team on the second of the two days of testing and he was immediately on the pace, adapting well to working with a new team. On a wet track in the morning session Nigel was 4th fastest and, on a drying track, he was 3rd quickest in the afternoon session.
Having his first outing in a Racing Engineering car on the first day of the test, Thursday, will be René Binder, the 19 year old Austrian from Innsbruck. Despite his youth René has a lot of experience, in 2010 he raced in the ATS Formel 3 Cup where, driving a Dallara F305 Volkswagen, he finished 7th in the SONAX Rookie Championship, Continuing in the ATS Cup for 2011 René finished 8th in the main championship and he also contested two races in the FIA F2 series. A third season of ATS F3 in 2012 saw the young Austrian finish 6th at the end of the year.
René had his first race in a GP2 car at Spa and he contested the last three races of the 2012 Series with a best finish in Race 2 at Monza where he finished 13th.
Day two of testing, Friday, will see Fabio Leimer return to the cockpit of a Racing Engineering car, the 23 year old Swiss having driven for the team in the 2012 GP2 Series. Always fast on all of the GP2 tracks he raced on this season only bad luck prevented Fabio from taking his first win in the main GP2 Series and he finished the season in 7th place, taking 6 podiums with best results of 2nd at Bahrain, Hockenheim and Monza. As always, Fabio can be expected to be amongst the very fastest drivers.