Youth to the fore: Young Volkswagen drivers ready for the formula 3 opener in Silverstone
This year, seven drivers from the British Carlin team and Germany’s Motopark team will take to the track with 240-hp engines from Wolfsburg in the rear of their Formula 3 single-seaters.
“The promotion of young drivers has always enjoyed a great tradition at Volkswagen,” said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Sven Smeets. “The Formula 3 European Championship has already been the start of a successful motorsport career for many youngsters. This year’s grid again features some very promising, talented youngsters. They have the potential to follow in the footsteps as the likes of Max Verstappen, who progressed straight from Formula 3 to Formula 1 with Volkswagen’s support.”
Debutants and experienced pros: the 2017 Volkswagen drivers
Youth to the fore: As well as such established drivers as Joel Eriksson (S, Motopark), rookie champion with Volkswagen in 2016, a host of youngsters are set to contest their first full season in Europe’s most prestigious series for young drivers. These include 17-year-old Lando Norris (GB, Carlin), who caught the eye with the fastest time of the day at the test in Hungary. Also set to make their debut in the Formula 3 European Championship are Jehan Daruvala (IND) and Ferdinand Habsburg (A), who both start for Carlin, and Motopark drivers Keyvan Andres Soori (D) and Marino Sato (J). Jake Dennis (Carlin) returns to Volkswagen, and can call on the experience gained over the course of two seasons in the junior racing series. The Brit knows how it feels to stand on the podium in Silverstone, having twice finished third there at the opening round of the 2015 season.
As a brand, Volkswagen has enjoyed a long and successful tradition in Formula 3. Between 1982 and 1991, seven Volkswagen drivers won the title in the German Formula 3 Championship. They included the likes of motorsport stars Tom Kristensen (DK), nine-time winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and seven-time Formula 1 world champion Michael Schumacher (D).
Springboard to Formula 1 with Volkswagen: Youngsters look to emulate Max Verstappen and co.
Of the current crop of regular Formula 1 drivers, Max Verstappen (NL), Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Daniil Kvyat (RUS) and Carlos Sainz junior (E) took their first steps in Formula 3 with Volkswagen. They were joined at the opening round of the Formula 1 season in Australia by another driver from the Volkswagen talent factory, in the form of Antonio Giovinazzi (I) – second overall in the 2015 Formula 3 European Championship. Marco Wittmann (D), another former Volkswagen Junior, won the DTM championship in 2014 and 2016.
As in recent years, news channel n-tv will again broadcast the races in the Formula 3 European Championship this season. A livestream with English commentary is also available at www.fiaf3europe.com.