GP2 Series renamed to FIA Formula 2 Championship
After twelve years of running, GP2 Series is renamed to FIA Formula 2 Championship, FIA announces today, following an agreement with Formula One Group. The announcement was made today at the World Motor Sport Council held in Geneva, Switzerland. A new name has immediate effect, starting from the 2017 season onwards.
Formula Two disappeared from world’s racing scene after the season 2012. Now, a new FIA Formula 2 Championship will continue to provide the same opportunities for young drivers as GP2 Series was doing since 2005. Formula 2 join the ranks of single-seater FIA championships as the last step before Formula 1.
Speaking about the change, Formula One Group CEO Chase Carey said: “I am very pleased to announce the evolution of the GP2 Series to become the FIA Formula 2 Championship. Junior categories and especially the upcoming F2 Championship are strategic activities for the Formula One Group. We are delighted to strengthen them through this agreement with the FIA.”
FIA President Jean Todt said: “Completing this process with Formula One Group and bringing Formula 2 to life is a very important step. The series will provide a fantastic opportunity for junior drivers who are looking to reach the ultimate goal of Formula 1. In recent years we have developed a hugely successful programme of FIA Formula 4 championships in 12 countries around the world and the FIA F3 European Championship has become very strong and competitive. Today’s announcement further strengthens this programme. We are delighted to have been able to work with the Formula One Group, to introduce F2 and benefit our sport.”
Two F1 champions among GP2 Series winners
GP2 Series was introduced in 2005, following the discontinuation of Formula 3000. The first ever GP2 Series champion was Nico Rosberg, who became F1 champion eleven years later. After Rosberg, other GP2 champions were Lewis Hamilton (2006), Timo Glock (2007), Giorgio Pantano (2008), Nico Hulkenberg (2009), Pastor Maldonado (2010), Romain Grosjean (2011), Davide Valsecchi (2012), Fabio Leimer (2013), Jolyon Palmer (2014), Stoffel Vandoorne (2015) and Pierre Gasly (2016).