17 years, Romanian, Visoiu wins the second race in Valènca
Race 2 belonged to Robert Visoiu. The Romanian driver started from reverse pole and he brilliantly controlled a lights to flag victory, the first of his GP3 career with a seven second advantage. Koiranen GP’s Aaro Vainio finished second with Carlos Sainz achieving his debut rostrum in the Series in third.
With a track temperature of 61 degrees, Visoiu made a great getaway to lead the pack but it was Sainz who was on the move passing Marussia Manor Racing’s Tio Ellinas and almost finding his way through on Vainio until the door was closed. Adderly Fong (Status Grand Prix), David Fumanelli (Trident) and Eric Lichtenstein (Carlin) retired early on with transmission issues.
In front, Visoiu started to build a gap back to Vainio as he managed the pace and tyres in the early part of the 18 lap race. Ellinas didn’t want to hang around and harassed Sainz for P3, but the MW Arden driver resisted his best efforts. Jenzer Motorsport’s Patric Niederhauser weekend was brought to a premature end when he had an excursion through the gravel and returned to the box to climb out of the car.
Marussia Manor Racing’s Dino Zamparelli was eager to sneak a move on Race 1 winner Conor Daly who was in P8 but the American held on with the focus on his ART Grand Prix teammate Facu Regalia one place ahead. Meanwhile, Visoiu continued to extend his impressive lead to over three seconds advantage to the Finn.
On a track that has proved difficult to pass, Carlin’s Nick Yelloly again was quick to move through the pack, overtaking Zamparelli for P9 and eventually just missing out on a points finish. Towards the latter stages, Koiranen GP’s Kevin Korjus appeared to be suffering with tyre degradation and came under immense pressure for the ART Grand Prix duo of Regalia and Daly in the final laps. However, the Estonian rookie was able to maintain his position.
Visoiu took the chequered flag first to record his maiden GP3 victory, whilst Sainz almost passed Vainio on the line for P2. It was a popular result for the local fans with Spaniard Sainz appearing on the rostrum in his rookie year. Ellinas was fourth with Daniil Kvyat in P5, the Russian making it three MW Arden drivers in the top five. Korjus, Regalia and Daly pocketed the final points.
Ellinas regains the lead in the Driver’s Standings on 55 points, with Daly close behind on 51 and Vainio on 43. ART Grand Prix top the Team Standings on 84, four points ahead of Koiranen GP, with MW Arden in third on 63.
Round 3 of the Series will take place in Silverstone in Northamptonshire, UK on 28-30 June.