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Spa: Official Preview

NEWS STORY
26/08/2010

The GP2 Series is back into action this weekend after a three-week summer break. When we left Budapest at the beginning of this month, Pastor Maldonado was keeping the pace at the head of the Series: win number five under his belt meant that the Rapax ace increased his lead even further. His closest rivals Sergio Perez and Dani Clos - although mighty fighters - were only left with the crumbs, but with three rounds remaining in the 2010 season, nothing has been decided yet and the title is still up for grabs.

This week's stop: Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium, a place that always provides thrilling racing and great drama. This challenging and high speed track is quite demanding in terms of car set-up and drivers' skills. The long venue of 7.004 kilometers is one of drivers' favourites as explained by DPR's Michael Herck: "I like Spa, it's a beautiful track – one of the best on the calendar. Unfortunately the weather is always a bit unpredictable, which can make things tricky. The biggest challenge there is to be quick no matter what the conditions are like. It's a quick track, and also very technical, so I think it will be tough for the drivers who have not been there before. To get a good lap you need to get a good exit from the first corner, because that sets you up for a good run down the hill and then up through Eau Rouge. The double lefthander, Pouhon, is quite important too. There are a few places where you can overtake, and we have seen in the past that Les Combes and the Bus Stop are both places where you can try a move on someone. I think the gap between the first and last cars will be quite big at Spa; a lot more than we have seen at some other races. It could be twice as big as the gap at a tight and twisting track like the Hungaroring."

A total of three driver changes occur this weekend, starting with Ho Pin Tung. Injured in the Budapest feature race, the Dams racer will miss Spa and will be replaced by GP2 returnee and former F1 driver Romain Grosjean. However, the Chinaman is on the mend and hopes to be back in his car for the penultimate round in Monza. After winning the sprint race at the Hungaroring, Italian Giacomo Ricci is replaced at DPR by countryman Fabrizio Crestani. For the Last change, Alvaro Parente rejoins Scuderia Coloni in place of Alberto Valerio.

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