ART Grand Prix
Alexander Rossi (USA)
2009: fourth in Formula Master, ninth in GP2 Asia
The 2008 FBMW Americas champion looks to have landed on his feet with a Nicolas Todt management deal in his pocket - hence his place at ART. Showed well in his GP2 Asia campaign with Meritus this winter.
Esteban Gutierrez (MEX)
2009: ninth in F3 Euro Series
The 2008 Formula BMW Europe champion didn't set the world on fire during his rookie F3 season, but came on stronger as the year went by and has been blisteringly quick in pre-season testing. Should be a title contender.
Pedro Nunes (BR)
2009: F3 Euro Series (no placing)
The less said about his 2009 Euro Series campaign with Manor the better. After taking the runner-up spot in Sudam F3 in 2008, more was expected than a best finish of 12th in the Hockenheim season finale. Needs to step it up.
Robert Wickens (CDN)
2009: Formula 2 runner-up
Red Bull took Wickens into F2 last year and then dropped him when he failed to halt runaway champion Andy Soucek. He's now re-united himself with the team that ran him successfully in A1GP in 2007.
Ivan Lukashevich (RUS)
2009: No racing
The Russian will celebrate his 20th birthday on the weekend GP3 is born. Jumping straight in after a year away from racing, with only two patchy seasons in Jonathan Palmer's FPA series behind him, suggests he'll have his work cut out.
Daniel Morad (CDN)
2009: No racing
Like his countryman and team-mate, Wickens, Morad made a name for himself with some impressive performances in Formula BMW and A1GP. But Morad wasn't fortunate enough to be picked up by Red Bull and has found opportunities in Europe thin on the ground. He's now got the chance to prove that he is worthy of a break.
Nigel Melker (NL)
2009: 23rd in Formula Renault Eurocup
After two underwhelming FRenault 2.0 seasons, Melker steps up to GP3 with F3 Euro Series veteran Mucke. Has spent the winter testing his own F3 car, but don't expect him to be the fastest Dutchman.
Renger Van Der Zande (NL)
2009: third in British F3
After four years racing in F3 category, van der Zande is stepping... across to an equivalent. The Dutchman has proved himself highly able at this level (several times) and Mucke will expect him to lead its charge.
Tobias Hegewald (D)
2009: sixth in Formula 2
'Inconsistent' probably best describes Hegewald. Looks pretty handy one minute, but fades into obscurity the next. Utterly dominated the F2 field at Spa last year so expect him to go well at GP3's penultimate round in Belgium.
Josef Newgarden (USA)
2009: British Formula Ford runner-up
His planned move into British F3 fell through. He should've won the British FFord title last season, but mistakes and failures denied him. He's a good racer, but has little slicks and wings experience.
Dean Smith (GB)
2009: Formula Renault UK champion
Truly came of Age: last season to claim the FRUK title and the McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award. Showed his class during that campaign and, after a winter of uncertainty, finally has the Racing Steps Foundation footing the bill. Now it's up to him again.
Lucas Foresti (BR)
2009: third in Sudam F3
Roberto Moreno's protege runs dual campaigns in British F3 and GP3 with Carlin this season. Struggled for pace and hit a rival under a safety car (while looking for his radio button) on his F3 debut last month. Things can only get better...
James Jakes (GB)
2009: GP2 Asia (two races)
This is a big year for Jakes, who needs to put himself back on the map after an abortive graduation to GP2 last year. Brings three seasons of F3 experience with him, which should come in handy.
Rio Haryanto (RI)
2009: Formula BMW Pacific champion
The three-time Asian Junior Karting champion annihilated his regional FBMW rivals last season, but a move to Europe brings a tougher test. Hopes a partial parallel campaign in British F3 will make up for the lack of mileage on offer in GP3.
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs (GB)
2009: fourth in Formula Renault Eurocup, fourth in Formula Renault NEC
The Briton has spent the last two years racing Formula Renaults in Europe and has done well, without ever setting the world alight. But fourth in the Eurocup - one of the most competitive junior categories in the world - shows an ability to run at the front.
Felipe Guimaraes (BR)
2009: Indy Lights
The Brazilian, like most of his countrymen, started out in SudAm F3, then tried to crack Europe. He made only sporadic appearances in A1GP and Euroseries 3000 before an impressive showing in his three Indy Lights outings in 2009.
Pablo Sanchez Lopez (MEX)
2009: third in Italian F3
Finds himself in GP3 thanks to ubiquitous Mexican-driver backer TELMEX and its deal with '08 GP2 champion Addax. FMaster, FRenault 3.5 and Ferrari F1 test experience should stand him in good stead.
Mirko Bortolotti (I)
2009: fourth in Formula 2
Italy isn't blessed with a high calibre of up-and-comers at the moment, so losing Red Bull backing was a real blow during the off-season. A place on the new 'Ferrari Driver Academy' (and a GP3 ride) has halted the 2008 Italian F3 champ's slide.
Atech CRS GP
Oliver Oakes (GB)
2009: 18th in British F3
The former world karting champion aims to re-establish himself after his '09 British F3 campaign with Carlin ended early in a flurry of solicitors' letters. Needs to access his latent speed more often.
Patrick Reiterer (I)
2009: ninth in Formula Master
Three seasons of car racing has yielded just one podium (in Italian Formula Renault). David Hayles's new Atech CRS GP operation should be a great environment for him to learn at this level.
Vittorio Ghirelli (BR)
The Italian only turns 16 on the Sunday of this weekend's event at Barcelona, making him easily the youngest driver on the grid. A year of GP3 and Italian F3 will give him plenty of mileage during his first season in cars.
Michael Christensen (DK)
2009: fourth Formula BMW Europe
Started 2009 as a favourite for the FBMW Europe title, but his season was derailed by the Mucke engine scandal. Has been quick in testing, but a lack of varied single-seater experience may hurt him.
Miki Monras (E)
2009: fifth in Formula Renault Eurocup
Finishing top-six in the competitive Renault Eurocup seems a good effort. But less so when your team-mate (Jean-Eric Vergne) wins several races and challenges for the title. Monras is no slouch and reversed grids may help him break his duck.
Leonardo Cordeiro (BR)
2009: Sudam F3 champion
Dominated his rivals to win the South American F3 title at the third attempt last season. Comes to Europe filled with confidence, but he faces a much higher level of competition than at any stAge: of his career thus far.
Tech 1 Racing
Doru Sechelariu (RO)
2009: 15th in Formula BMW Europe
The Romanian dovetailed a third FBMW season with a partial effort in European F3 Open last year and achieved little of note in either - maintaining a decline since two Belgian FRenault wins in 2007.
Dani Juncadella (E)
2009: Formula BMW Europe runner-up
A regular front-runner in Formula BMW Europe, Juncadella looked good on his Formula 3 debut in the Euro Series as well. Both he and team-mate Vergne will double up their F3 campaigns with GP3 seasons.
Jean-Eric Vergne (F)
2009: Formula Renault Eurocup runner-up, Formula Renault WEC runner-up
As hot favourite for the British F3 title this year, the Frenchman will have his work cut out to focus on title challenges in two different series. But that's the strategy of backer Red Bull and Vergne will have to prove he's up to it.
Pal Varhaug (N)
2009: fifth in Formula Master
Hopes to become the first Norwegian to race in F1, but has so far shown little sign he has the extra ingredients to succeed where others failed. Has spent his entire career with Jenzer, so there's familiarity.
Simon Trummer (CH)
2009: 11th in Formula Master
Clay Regazzoni, Jo Siffert, Marc Surer, Toulo de Graffenried, Sebastien Buemi, Simon Trummer? Seems an unlikely addition to the list of Swiss stars given his record but rejoining Jenzer after a poor FMaster with Iris Project should help his chances.
Nico Muller (CH)
2009: Swiss Formula Renault champion
Won last year's Swiss FRenault title and also managed a podium finish on his Eurocup debut in Barcelona, but couldn't reach those heights again. Inexperienced line-up will rely heavily on Jenzer's expertise to suss out the new car.
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Ben Anderson is Autosport's Grand Prix Editor and one of our track testers. He holds an undergraduate degree in journalism studies from the University of Sheffield and joined the title in March of 2008, after eight months working in local newspaper journalism for award-winning weekly the Surrey Mirror. He has raced karts and cars since the age of 11, and occasionally continues to do so around his reporting commitments for Autosport.@BenAndersonAuto More features by Ben Anderson