Ever since he joined the post-season test in Abu Dhabi last November, we knew that our very own Marlon Stockinger was making the big jump from Formula Renault 3.5 to GP2. The only question was when? Well, I guess we have our answer now.
It has been confirmed that the 23-year-old Filipino-Swiss driver will race in GP2 for the 2015 season. And the team that will take him through all of the 11 rounds this year is none other than Silverstone-based Status GP. If that name sounds familiar, that’s because it’s also the same team Marlon drove for during his GP3 years. Yes, the same squad where he won the Monaco GP in 2012.
“We are delighted to welcome Marlon back to the team following a successful GP3 campaign in 2012. Marlon is a hard-working and dedicated driver and we know he will apply a high level of professionalism to his maiden GP2 season,” said Status GP Team Principal, Teddy Yip.
There is, however, one thing you should know about Status GP. Like Marlon, this too will be their first year in GP2 after they took over the now defunct Caterham Racing team. But despite the obvious learning curve, Yip stressed that the team has very experienced and talented personnel that will allow Marlon to “succeed in this highly competitive F1 feeder series.”
But what about Lotus F1? Although has there been no official announcement, it appears that Marlon retains his post as a Lotus F1 Junior driver. This gives him an option to step up to Formula 1 when the right time comes.
According to Marlon Stockinger, “It is really good to come back to Status and I have a lot of happy memories from our time in GP3, especially winning in Monaco. The team are based at Silverstone which is where my European racing career kicked off and it feels very nostalgic and positive. I feel very excited to be back with the team in my first GP2 season.
“GP2 is a tough championship and this year there are some very big names chasing the title. As a rookie, I think the best thing is to aim to be in the points and finish in the top ten, progressing one step at a time and learning as much as possible during pre-season testing.