Alexander RossiEighteen year old American, Alexander Rossi, showed his abilities this week at Circuito de Jerez, Spain for the first collective GP2 winter test. Rossi wasted no time transitioning to the 600 horsepower V8 Renault as the lone American returning to GP2 series since 2005.

Rossi, using the experience of the GP2 car as preparation for his BMW Sauber F1 test at Jerez taking place, December 1st – 3rd. Finishing his first day with Piquet GP, Alexander posted the 12th quickest lap of 25 drivers. The top 12 drivers were separated by only 1 second with many having much more GP2 experience than young Rossi.

On Thursday, Rossi drove for DAMS, the 2008 GP2 Asia Championship winners. Alexander finished a strong 9th overall, 7/10ths off the quickest time. In the morning session, Rossi was quickest in wet conditions until a hydraulic pump failure ruined the American’s chances to hold the top spot.

“Considering his very low racing experience, Alexander did a really great job”, Eric Boullier, DAMS – Team Principal. “He impressively outpaced the whole field in the morning in the wet conditions and show everybody a very strong speed during all the day. His car control is remarkable and he adapted very well to the 600hp-GP2 car driving. Last but not the least, he fitted nicely within the Dams team.”

“On Tuesday with Piquet GP, I learned so much about the complex Bridgestone tire and carbon brakes, which gave me a lot of confidence heading into my second opportunity to drive the car,” Rossi commented. “As I prepared for my F1 test, my goal over the two days was to learn as much as possible about the car and the circuit, which I feel I accomplished. On Thursday, I believe DAMS had the pace to be P1, however extrenuating circumstances prevented it from happening.”

“Getting a clean lap was very difficult at times due to repeated red flags and slower traffic, but this is a part of racing which everyone has to deal with,” Rossi added. “It was an honor and privilidge to drive for two highly respected teams and I believe we developed some strong relationships for the future. I am pleased with the results and found the GP2 car quite comfortable to drive.”

“Alexander learned the GP2 car very quickly”, commented Andrea Bergamini – Piquet GP – Managing Director. “In Jerez this past week, our team was impressed with Alexander’s ability. He is quick, precise and proved he’s ready for the transition to GP2. We would be delighted to run him in 2010.”

Team Rossi is currently in the midst of sponsorship acquisition and fall testing plans for Alexander. For 2010, many options have been presented and are now being assessed very carefully. It is the goal for Rossi to gain more experience in a GP2 car, before his BMW Sauber F1 test. If the opportunity becomes available, he will participate in the GP2 test at Paul Ricard, France – November 10 -12th.

Rossi has meetings the next couple of weeks in the United States, but will continue to reside and train in Pietrasanta, Italy while preparing for 2010.

Photo by Dawn Rossi – Team Rossi Motorsports