With just one round to go Carlin’s Antonio Felix da Costa is well and truly in the GP3 Series title hunt after a strong weekend in Belgium saw him move up to second place in the championship standings. Taking two podium positions during a heavily disrupted weekend the Red Bull Junior has just two races in which to close the points gap to Series leader Mitch Evans. Carlin team mates William Buller and Alex Brundle have also been consistent points scorers this season and will be looking to end their season with more strong results at Monza this weekend.

With back to back races it has been a tight turnaround for the team who left Belgium with two more trophies following a strong weekend for da Costa. An extremely heavy crash for Robert Cregan early on in the first race last Saturday brought out the red flags and the race came to a premature end. Da Costa who had started from fourth on the grid had moved up to second place early on, and although only half points were awarded he began closing the gap to second placed man in the standings Aaro Vainio.

Starting from seventh on the grid on Sunday morning da Costa made his way through the field and up to second position as the flag fell. The strong weekend also saw him take points for fastest lap in both races – and snatch second in the overall standings from Vainio to move within 21.5 points of leader Mitch Evans.

Team mates Brundle and Buller both endured a difficult qualifying and race one, but bounced back with some impressive overtaking manoeuvres in race two, with Buller taking a point for eighth place putting the duo on equal points. So far this year Buller has taken a sensational win from the back of grid during a tricky race at Silverstone while Brundle took his first GP3 Series podium in Hungary after a great drive on slick tyres on a drying track.

As the 2012 season reaches its climax at the historic Monza circuit this weekend tensions will be high in the most closely fought GP3 season so far. The Italian track is always a firm favourite with drivers who enjoy the long, fast straights, which provide plenty of slip streaming and overtaking opportunities. Having hosted Formula One every year since the championship begun the track is also steeped in history from its iconic banking to the sell-out crowds.

Looking ahead to final two rounds da Costa said, “The whole team is in a confident mood heading to Monza. Obviously we want to win, and we are in a good position now after two strong weekends in Hungary and Spa. People are saying there is no pressure, but of course there is pressure, although its internal and the pressure we put on ourselves to win. We are going to push every lap as hard as we can for victory.”

Team mate Buller added, ‘It’s great to have the final round as a back to back race and even better that we finish the season at such a great track. I’m looking forward to this weekend a lot and Monza is probably one of my favourite circuits because it provides great overtaking opportunities and is very fast and flowing. The key will be a good qualifying on Saturday morning and then take it from there.’

Brundle said of his season, ‘I think the season has gone well for me considering that it’s my rookie year in the GP3 Series, we’ve picked up some good results and I’ve enjoyed driving the car. I’ve had some good races here in the past so I can’t wait to get back out on track and hopefully do the same again – and the atmosphere here when you’re racing is really amazing.’