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Davide Valsecchi enters this weekend's season-opening race at Barcelona with the knowledge that he and the iSport team topped the second half of the final pre-season test session at the Circuit de Catalunya last month. However, the reining GP2 Asia Series Champion expects a stiff challenge this weekend.
Hoping to aim for the title in his first GP2 Main Series campaign, Valsecchi experienced mix results over the winter - not helped by changeable weather conditions - although the Italian is quietly optimistic that he can fight for the crown.
"For this season…that completely changed the question!" he laughed when asked by GPUpdate.net if being the reigning Asia Series title holder adds to the pressure. "First, we have to consider that we have a different car and everything here so I don't know, but the first thing that we do know is that it will be hard, really hard, to fight at the top."
Davide admits that he was frustrated at times by the mix of dry and wet track surfaces in testing and is unable to identify each team's genuine pace. "I don't know - this incredible bloody weather, it's not so easy to understand!" he continued.
"There was the wind and every two minutes it started to rain just a bit, so it's not so easy to understand in that situation but, anyway, it seems that in the end we did a good job and we were competitive enough to fight with the others. We also have to consider that it should be much hotter, so everything will be different."
The Erba-born driver, who partners Britain's Oliver Turvey this season, summed up by describing his ideal testing agenda on the run-up to the season: "The best things are to be competitive, describe to (engineer) Raul the feelings of the car and then go to the hotel - it's the best way, if you want to be fast on the track - but, when you're not fast enough to be first, you have to stay to think about it…just to help!"
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