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Alexander Sims will be contesting this year’s Macau Grand Prix with the Japanese TOM’s outfit, it has been confirmed. The 23-year-old Englishman, who led for much of this year’s GP3 championship before suffering a handful of technical problems in the second half of the season, admits that he is somewhat inaudibly optimistic.
Based in Wansford near Peterborough, several late nights and early mornings have been required for Sims in order to negotiate the drive.
“Initially, it was just one email a day,” Sims explains to GPUpdate.net. “You get one email, then you reply – and if you don’t reply first thing in the morning then it will take longer for them to get back to you, so it was a bit of slow progress to start with. I ended up getting up at four and five in the morning on a couple of days to get things sorted out.
“I’m very happy that it was them approaching me to see if I was around and I said, ‘Of course!’ My team-mate will be Richard Bradley, who has been doing Japanese F3 this year. He’s a lovely guy and I already know him from karting many, many years ago – he was a cadet when I was in juniors, so he was a few years behind me, but I know him pretty damn well; I know he’s a decent person, so we should be a pretty strong team. It is his first time at Macau and my third, so I imagine I will be leading the team but I’m sure he will be quick.”
When presented with a list of former Macau winners – including Formula 1 stars Ayrton Senna, Michael and Ralf Schumacher and David Coulthard – Sims was asked how much adding his name would mean.
“There’s still a long way to go until we’re facing that situation!” he laughs. “There will be a number of drivers there who have done very well in the past. But I am quietly confident that we can come out with the win; I’ve already got some experience there, so I think it’s a good situation so far.
“I think it’s going to be a very strong grid this year. You’ve got all the F3 regulars – (Roberto) Merhi and (Marco) Wittmann from the F3 Euro Series, Richie Stanaway from German F3 plus (Vatteri) Bottas and Mitch Evans from GP3. It’s going to be tough, but it always is at Macau because you have all of the world’s best F3 drivers up against each other.”
In order to be officially eligible for racing at Macau, Sims will contest this weekend’s British F3 season finale at Silverstone with the German Motopark team after initial talks with Sino Vision Racing fell through in their late stages.
Also on Thursday:
Entry list for 2011 Macau Grand Prix
|6 Oct '11||Sims ‘quietly confident’ for Macau GP win|
|16 Aug '12||Henry Surtees Challenge offering GP3 test|
|4 Jan '12||Sims to climb Kilimanjaro for HSF|
|9 Oct '11||Sims: I didn't expect to claim victory|
|9 Oct '11||Sims dominates second Silverstone race|
|16 May||Three-day Abu Dhabi test for GP2 and GP3|
|3 May||Williamson gets final Bamboo seat|
|3 May||Cullen completes Marussia GP3 line-up|
|26 Apr||Bamboo signs McKee for 2013 season|
|Macau Grand Prix|
|21 Nov '12||Félix da Costa: Macau my greatest victory|
|18 Nov '12||Latest F3 photos: Sunday in Macau|
|18 Nov '12||Félix da Costa wins Macau Grand Prix|
|17 Nov '12||Latest F3 photos: Saturday in Macau|
|More Alexander Sims photos|