Argentine racer Facu Regalia has split from GP2 Series squad Hilmer Motorsport, following a difficult start to the season.
The 22-year-old has endured a torrid opening four rounds, peppered by a series of mechanical issues, which have left Regalia rooted to the bottom of the standings with no points.
On his website yesterday, Regalia confirmed that another poor weekend at the Red Bull Ring drew a line under the sand. “On Sunday, after the second race in Austria, I decided not to keep running with the team,” he said.
Regalia added: “The team did not quite put a competitive car; I suffered problems tuning in Bahrain, Barcelona and Austria, and motor problems in all competitions.”
The Buenos Aires native noted that these issues did not reveal themselves in Monaco, partially due to the nature of the circuit; however an accident at the beginning of race one effectively ruined his weekend.
The lack of results has not been a one-sided affair. Regalia’s Hilmer teammate Daniel Abt has also been plagued by mechanical problems and occasional bouts of poor luck, rendering him scoreless, as the halfway mark of the season approaches.
The former GP3 Series race winner also revealed that ongoing budgetary issues hampered opportunities to join a leading team. “The lack of financial support has played an important role because, having had a start to the season I could have signed with Dams, Racing Engineering, ART and Campos.”
Meanwhile, Regalia is determined to carry on with efforts to secure another GP2 driver as soon as possible. “Personally, I need a car that allows me to fight on, as I proved last year, and keep intact my aspirations to get to Formula 1. Currently I’m evaluating proposals to continue in GP2.”
A member of Force India’s driver development programme, Regalia revealed that the lack of points frustrated his efforts. “What I do know is that with the results I had in the first four dates, [the] Driver Development program was not going to be able to perform […] as agreed, precisely for lack of results.”
With performance markers across the stretch of the season, it is likely the Argentine driver may have fallen short had he continued with the German team.
Hilmer replaced Ocean Racing Technology in the GP2 Series last season and launched a GP3 entry this year as late cover for the defunct RUSSIAN TIME squad.
Yet where the Force India junior team took four GP2 victories in 2013 – despite a seemingly ever-changing line-up – the team have struggled to repeat those efforts. Hilmer have yet to announce a replacement driver.