GP2: 2015 grid continues to shape up with King, Nato announcements


The grid for the 2015 GP2 Series season is nearly half-full as Formula 1’s leading feeder series prepares for the new year of racing.

The championship supports F1 for all of its European rounds, as well as flyaways in Abu Dhabi and Bahrain, and has produced a number of the sport’s top names including Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg and Romain Grosjean.

Last year, Jolyon Palmer clinched the championship and has since moved into a reserve role at Lotus F1 Team for the 2015 season. The only graduate from GP2 to F1 for the new year is Felipe Nasr, who finished third with Carlin ahead of his move to Sauber.

The grid for 2015 is now almost half-full, with the title race poised to be between McLaren junior Stoffel Vandoorne and Red Bull youngster Pierre Gasly. GP3 champion Alex Lynn, Ferrari junior Raffaele Marciello and France’s Arthur Pic could also be in the mix for the title though, setting the stage for one of the best seasons in years.

The past week has seen two more announcements ahead of the new season, with British driver Jordan King joining Racing Engineering and former Formula Renault 3.5 driver Norman Nato being confirmed at Arden.

King (pictured) won the prestigious British F3 title back in 2013 before finishing seventh in last year’s FIA F3 European Championship. His father, Justin, is a big played within UK business and is thought to be involved in the proposed rescue of Marussia F1 Team.

Nato spent two years in Formula Renault 3.5 with DAMS, and was the teammate of title winner Carlos Sainz Jr. in 2014. The Frenchman claimed two race wins that year, and is now looking to find success in GP2.

GP2 2015 – Confirmed Drivers

Pierre Gasly FRA
Alex Lynn GBR

Marco Sorensen DEN
Julian Leal COL

ART Grand Prix
Stoffel Vandoorne BEL

Racing Engineering
Jordan King GBR

Artem Markelov RUS

Raffaele Marciello ITA

Campos Racing
Arthur Pic FRA

Arden International
Andre Negrao BRA
Norman Nato FRA

SuperMotocross set to introduce Leader Lights beginning with the World Championship finals


In a continuing effort to help fans keep track of the on track action, SuperMotocross is in the process of developing and implementing leader lights for the unified series.

Currently Supercross (SMX) utilizes stanchions in the infield that are triggered manually by a race official. At least two stanchions are used in each race as a way to draw the eye to the leader, which is especially useful in the tight confines of the stadium series when lapping often begins before the halfway mark in the 22-bike field. This system has been in place for the past two decades.

Later this year, a fully automated system will move to the bike itself to replace the old system. At that point, fans will be able to identify the leader regardless of where he is on track.

The leader lights were tested in the second Anaheim round this year. An example can be seen at the 1:45 mark in the video above on the No. 69 bike.

“What we don’t want to do is move too fast, where it’s confusing to people,” said Mike Muye, senior director of operations for Supercross and SMX in a press release. “We’ve really just focused on the leader at this point with the thought that maybe down the road we’ll introduce others.”

Scheduled to debut with the first SuperMotocross World Championship race at zMax Dragway, located just outside the Charlotte Motor Speedway, a 3D carbon fiber-printed LED light will be affixed to each motorcycle. Ten timing loops positioned around the track will trigger the lights of the leader, which will turn green.

SMX’s partner LiveTime Scoring helped develop and implement the system that has been tested in some form or fashion since 2019.

When the leader lights are successfully deployed, SuperMotocross will explore expanding the system to identify the second- and third-place riders. Depending on need and fan acceptance, more positions could be added.

SuperMotocross is exploring future enhancements, including allowing for live fan interaction with the lights and ways to use the lighting system during the race’s opening ceremony.