GP2: Rio Haryanto Joins Marussia Carlin Team, Moves Closer to F1 Goal

GP2: Rio Haryanto Joins Marussia Carlin Team, Moves Closer to F1 Goal
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Rio Haryanto will start a new chapter in his racing career as he steps into the GP2 Series with the Marussia Carlin team.

Rio will undergo a preseason training test for his new team at the Circuito de Jerez, in southern Spain. The test will run through Thursday. It won’t be his first time driving a GP2 car. Rio raced in last November’s postseason GP2 Final exhibition event at Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, for the DAMS team. The Indonesian teenager officially joined Marussia Carlin last Friday, after spending the last two years with its subsidiary, Marussia Manor Racing, in the GP3 Series, a feeder class for GP2. By moving up to GP2, Rio is one step closer to reaching his goal, which is to race in the Formula One circuit. That wouldn’t be a far-fetched dream as Marussia, a sport cars manufacturer from Russia, also has a team in the world’s premiere motorsports event. “I am looking forward to my first year in the series with the Marussia Carlin GP2 Team,” Rio, 19, said in a statement. “GP2 is just a level below the most prestigious single-seater racing event in the world, Formula One.” GP2 was inaugurated in 2005 following the discontinuation of the long-term F1 feeder series, Formula 3000. Lewis Hamilton, the 2008 F1 world champion, began his career after winning the GP2 in 2006. The Semarang-born Rio, who has been racing since he was 8, raced in the 2010 GP3 season after winning the 2009 Formula BMW Pacific championship and finished fifth overall in his debut with Marussia Manor Racing. Last year he picked up two victories, in Germany and Hungary, to finish seventh for the season. Rio has been a part of the Marussia F1 Team Young Driver Program for the past two years and was the first Indonesian to drive an F1 car when he was invited by Virgin Racing to the Young Driver Test in Abu Dhabi in 2010. “Rio is an extremely welcome addition to the team,” said Trevor Carlin, Marussia Carlin’s racing director. “He is still very young but having watched him firsthand in GP3 last year, I’m sure we’ll see some exciting racing from him this year.” The 12-series GP2 season is scheduled to start in Sepang, Malaysia, on March 24-25. Antara, JG Taken from: The Jakarta Globe

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