Alexander Sims will make his return to the GP3 Series with Status Grand Prix at the Nurburgring this weekend.
Sims raced for Status in the 2011 season, and led the points standings after the Nurburgring weekend before finishing up in sixth place.
He will replace Adderly Fong, who is missing the German round of the campaign to compete in the Audi R8 LMS Cup in China, where he currently sits second the points behind former F1 backmarker Alex Yoong. Fong scored his first GP3 points with a ninth place finish in the first race last weekend at Silverstone, and will return to the Status car for the Hungaroring.
According to the team, Fong nominated Sims to replace him, with the pair having a relationship that dates back to 2011 when Sims did testing and coaching work for the Sino Vision Racing F3 team.
Sims is currently racing in the Blancpain Endurance Series as an official McLaren driver. He recently agreed to contest the next two rounds of the FIA F3 European Championship with T-Sport, having won at the Nurburgring for them last year.
?I?ve known Adderly quite well for a couple of years,? said Sims. ?It?s a new car in GP3 this year, and Adderly and Status GP were keen for me to come and do some work with the team while Adderly is away.
?It?s always tough going into a weekend having not driven the car, but I would hope with my experience that within the first five or 10 laps of free practice I should get an indication of the level of performance and then push very hard.? I?m not underestimating the challenge, so my plan is to just do everything I can and then see what happens.?
Fong added: ?Unfortunately I have to miss the Nurburgring ? not only am I racing the Audi R8 at Ordos but they have told me I have a Porsche Carrera Cup ride at the same meeting.
“Having a new GP3 car this year, we have stepped into unknown territory as far as making the package work, so it will be useful to have a driver with experience to help out with the car. Alexander tested my F3 car at Rockingham in 2011, and he has driver-coached me at quite a few of the British circuits, so we have a good relationship.?
Fong’s team-mates Josh Webster and Jimmy Eriksson have both only managed a best result of 16th in the opening six races of the season.