Will Bratt - GP2 Testing, JerezBanbury’s Will Bratt made an excellent impression during official GP2 Series testing at Jerez in Spain this week, the 21-year-old producing typically strong pace on only his third ever appearance behind the wheel of one of the Formula One support category’s cars.

Although the British racer’s progress was halted unexpectedly early by a blown engine during the second afternoon of running, Thursday, 8th October, Will was still able to post the 13th best time of the day with a lap of 1m27.137 seconds.

Impressively, the Oxon-based driver was also the fastest rookie during the rain-affected morning session with a time of 1m29.527 seconds placing him a superb fifth quickest behind four GP2 regulars.

Driving for the Italian PartyPokerRacing.com Scuderia Coloni team, Will bedded himself back in to GP2 machinery quickly during his first day at Jerez on Wednesday, 7th October, having last run in one of the Renault-powered cars almost exactly one year ago.

Posting a best lap of 1m26.990 seconds in the morning, improvements weren’t possible during the afternoon due to a problem with the hydraulics which resulted in an early end to the day after fluid leaked into the clutch.

Although disappointed to have had both days affected by problems, Will nonetheless shone on Spanish soil this week and is keen to make a swift return to GP2 which is his goal for 2010 as he progresses ever closer to his dream of Formula One.

“It’s been great to be back in a GP2 car and although our running was affected by the hydraulic issue on the first day and then the engine failure on my final afternoon, I’m pleased with how things went in general and I think we were able to prove I deserve a place on the GP2 grid next year”, said Will.

“To be fifth fastest on Thursday morning in difficult, wet conditions was fantastic – especially being the best of the rookies. In the afternoon I was 12th fastest on my first set of tyres, even though I lost time on my best lap. We were confident we could be in the top eight overall but before I was able to get a run on my last set of new tyres, the engine blew so that was the end of the day for us.”

Next on the agenda for Will is the all-important final event of the PartyPokerRacing.it Euroseries 3000 Championship which takes place just over a week from now, 17th/18th October, at the home of the Italian F1 Grand Prix, Monza in Italy – a track he has never previously visited.

Heading into the last two races of the season third in the driver standings, just six points shy of the championship lead, the British Racing Drivers’ Club (BRDC) Rising Star is aiming to challenge for his first international title. Should Will become 2009 Euroseries 3000 Champion, he will also win a funded drive in the upcoming GP2 Asia Series.

Provisional 2009 PartyPokerRacing.it Euroseries 3000 Championship Standings (after Rd11):
1st Fabio Onidi, 61pts; 2nd Marco Bonanomi, 58pts; 3rd Will Bratt, 55pts

Photo by GP2 Series Media Service