GP2, as the successor to the Formula 3000 series, has always been considered the step up to Formula One, and often regarded as the second fastest Formula racing series. When the Formula Renault series started the Formula Renault 3.5 championship in 2005, installing 3.5L V6 engine, it suddenly became a lot faster. Over the years, it’s gained speed though and this year, it actually seems to be produce the faster cars of the two pre-F1 series.
A comparison between both series is of course no exact science, as they don’t race head-to-head, but when comparing the pole position times for the tracks this year that were attended by both series, we get a good indication. At these 5 tracks, the Formula Renault 3.5 cars were on average 0.058 seconds faster. It may not seem much, but still impressive coming from what was initially ‘just another junior formula’.
|track||GP2||Formula Renault 3.5||Fastest series|
|Catalunya||1:30.655||1:29.986||FR3.5 by 0.669 seconds|
|Monaco||1:21.195||1:22.163||FR3.5 by 0.032 seconds|
|Silverstone||1:41.516*||1:42.638||GP2 by 0.968 seconds|
|Hungaroring||1:28.980||1:28.232||GP2 by 1.122 seconds|
|Spa-Francorchamps||1:59.102*||1:57.423||FR3.5 by 1.679 seconds|
*As qualifying this year was under wet circumstances, this time is derived from the last dry qualifying time, with the time adjusted between that year and the 2012 season.