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King Autosport16British racer Jordan King has confirmed that he will stay with the Racing Engineering team for his second season in the GP2 Series.

The 21-year-old Warwickshire driver made his debut in the Formula 1 feeder series with the Spanish squad in 2015, finishing 10th equal – and among the top few rookie drivers – in the final points reckoning.

King, who won the coveted British Formula 3 title in 2013, made the announcement during an appearance on the main interview stage at last weekend’s Autosport International Show at Birmingham’s NEC.

“I’m delighted to be staying with Racing Engineering,” King said. “This is a race- and championship-winning team with whom I had an enjoyable and largely satisfying rookie season. It’s great to have that continuity for my second season in GP2 and I’ll be doing my absolute utmost to build on my first year in the ultra-competitive series, starting with testing in Spain in a few weeks.”

Reflecting on his maiden season in the Dallara-Renault run by the team that guided Giorgio Pantano and Fabio Leimer to title success in 2008 and 2013 respectively, King admitted there was plenty to learn in 2015 and there will be no more ‘rookie excuses’.

“The season started well with fourth in Bahrain after coming back through the field,” he said, “so that gave me a great confidence boost. As the season progressed, though, I realised that the tyres behave differently at each circuit so you have to be on the money with the car set-up. I remained upbeat, of course, as the speed was there, but the learning curve is steep. You have to press the reset button every time, so hopefully in 2016 I’ll have a headstart.

“Overall it was a strong year. Highlights were that opening weekend at Sakhir, my speed on home soil at Silverstone and my first podium, when I finished second at Spa.

“Bouncing back from a back injury at Monaco was satisfying, too. In fact, in the latter stages of the season, I was really happy with my pace and challenging for good results. It would have been great to get another podium in the final race in Abu Dhabi, which was looking good until the race was red-flagged and not restarted while I was running third.”

King’s season was capped by his winning the FIA Institute’s Young Driver Award, as well as realising a lifetime’s ambition by testing a Grand Prix car for the first time.

“Winning the FIA Award was a big thrill, especially against plenty of good competition,” he said. “It’s always important to be recognised for the effort you put in. And testing the Manor Marussia in Abu Dhabi was a vital part of my development as a driver. It was a moment I’d been working towards since I started karting. To be part of their development-driver roster is tremendously exciting and I hope to be out in the car again during 2016.

“There are so many positives to take into this season and I can’t wait to get going!”

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