Tio Ellinas To Return To GP3 With Marussia Manor Racing
It has been officially confirmed that Tio Ellinas will return to the GP3 Series for the 2013 season with Marussia Manor Racing, which will also see the Cypriot receive an outing with the Marussia F1 Team at their Young Driver Test program later in the year. The 21-year-old is confident he can challenge for the Championship this season.
Last year Tio Ellinas made his debut in the feeder category with the same outfit, and enjoyed a tremendously competitive season which resulted in one victory and 8th in the Drivers’ Championship. After several tests with the team during the winter period, the Cypriot is full of confidence heading into his second season in the category. This will be the debut season for the new 400bhp GP3/13 machine, which the teams and drivers managed to test during the first three winter tests earlier in the year.
“I am delighted that I will be returning with Marussia Manor Racing for a second season.” Enthused Tio Ellinas, “The new GP3 car is fantastic to drive and I think the racing will be very exciting and highly competitive. After a strong end to the season in 2012 and a good winter test programme, I head to the first race at Barcelona full of confidence. It is going to be an interesting season.”
Tio Ellinas is extremely confident that he can challenge for the Drivers’ Championship this season in GP3, with consistency set to be the key for success. The Cypriot believes it is imperative that he competes in another season of GP3, with his debut season in the category last year his first in Europe after competing the UK. Tio Ellinas enjoyed a competitive winter testing period, finishing towards the sharp end of the timing sheets on a regular basis.
“I really need a second year in GP3, because last year it was my first season racing in Europe after two seasons in the UK,” explained Tio Ellinas to Sky Sports F1 Online. “After learning the tracks last year, I really need to make the most of the opportunity this year. In all the tests at Estoril and Barcelona, I was in the top three, top five consistently, so this could be our year – we could be Championship material. I am confident that I can have some wins and some podiums and the Championship is all about scoring points all the time and finishing in the top five, top four, this is the way to get the Championship.”
The 2013 GP3 Series season is shaping up to be yet another extremely competitive affair, with several drivers tipped to be Championship contenders including Tio Ellinas, Carlos Sainz jr. and Daniil Kvyat. The GP3 Series has become renowned for its close and competitive racing, with Mitch Evans securing the Championship last season by only two points over Daniel Abt. Both of those drivers eventually progressed to the GP2 Series, which will clearly by Tio Ellinas’s ambition should he secure the Championship.
Picture Copyright © Alastair Staley/GP3 Series Media Service