Matt Parry widened his options for 2015 after producing a strong showing on his first acquaintance with the GP3 Series last week.
The former County Upper School pupil enjoyed three days behind the wheel with the Status Grand Prix and Koiranen GP teams at the stunning Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi and made an immediate mark with strong performances across nearly 15 hours of track time.
The 20-year-old’s performance was such he left Abu Dhabi adding GP3 to his list of possible series for 2015 — which includes Formula Renault Eurocup and F3 — as he looks for a better year after a frustrating season in the Eurocup.
Parry was quickly up to speed in the opening session and — after making changes during the lunch break — he found more time to improve to one minute 56.472 seconds and end the day seventh fastest among the 23 drivers in action.
Although further changes to the car overnight did not yield another gain in time on the morning of day two, he returned to the tried-and-trusted set-up of day one after the interval to lower his personal best to 1.55.744 and again fill seventh spot on the timesheets.
“I quickly felt at home in the car on day one and I think my time was representative of the improvement I was able to make across the two sessions,” said Parry, who still has family in Bury.
Despite admitting he would have liked to have kept working with Status, Parry was able to continue his GP3 education by picking up a seat at Koiranen for the third and final day of testing.
There was no improvement in time, but Parry moved up the order to fill fourth spot in the morning session and only heavy traffic prevented him competing for top spot in the afternoon.
“It was great to be able to climb into the Koiranen car and immediately recreate the pace I showed with Status,” the reigning McLaren Autosport BRDC Driver of the Year admitted.
“The only frustrating thing was running into traffic at the end of my best lap as, without that, I reckon I would have been close to breaking into the 1.54s and potentially being quickest of all.”