IN GP2 CHAMPIONSHIP RACE
Bruno Senna, nephew of legendary driver Ayrton Senna, is turning heads in the Formula One paddock with his increasingly mature performances in GP2 this season.
The iSport driver lies in second place, only seven points behind the experienced Italian Georgio Pantano and closing rapidly. The challenge of beating this seasoned professional and an international field of rising stars to the GP2 series title is about to reach an intense climax as the final three rounds take place over the next four week period.
So far this campaign, Bruno has impressed by winning on the streets at Monte Carlo and in the rain at Silverstone and delivered two flawless drives for third place in both the feature and sprint races at Hungary last time out. Those headline grabbing successes combined with an ability to carve through the mid field chaos of the reverse grid sprint race format, have given Bruno renewed momentum. Having only lost ground though a vital mechanical failure while leading the French GP support race plus a now infamous on track collision with a stray dog in Turkey, many of the sport’s key observers believe he is on course to win the GP2 championship and follow his famous uncle into F1 next season.
He has won plenty of admirers in F1 and is rumoured to have spoken to several teams about 2009 seats but Bruno has not committed his future and remains focused on becoming a champion this season: “It’s great that people in F1 are talking about me” said Bruno “but I have unfinished business in GP2 and know that winning the championship will open even more doors. For the final three races, I believe I have prepared as well as possible with my team, iSport.
“The next race is at a circuit new to everybody but I believe that we have done our homework and it is the sort of unforgiving circuit I enjoy. After that we have Spa and Monza. Two great circuits where I have raced well before and again I have worked hard with my team to come up with a set up for my car that we believe will allow me to fight for pole position and race wins. It would be great to add to the Senna family successes as these two classic events, just as I managed to do in Monaco. However, victory is not the only target and all season we have been focussed on scoring as many points as possible during the hectic reverse grid sprint races that we have each Sunday. Winning is a great feeling but sometimes you don’t have the chance for whatever reason. Then you must drive with your head and hopefully by being able to do that, I will be able to reach my next goal - the GP2 championship.”
Judging by the words of Gerhard Berger, close friend of Ayrton and now co-owner of Scuderia Toro Rosso, Bruno has all the attributes to make a successful step up: “He reminds me of Ayrton. He’s very switched on, very quick thinking. What he has to do this year is win the GP2 championship.”
Aside from Bruno’s driving ability, his commercial value will not have escaped the attention of F1 bosses. If he continues the form shown at Hungary, Bruno will become a sure fire bet for F1, and one can only imagine the reaction if a team were to announce his signature during the F1 weekend at Interlagos.