Tommy Smith will make his Formula 3 debut for Van Amersfoort Racing next year, as the Dutch team confirm the Australian racer as their first signing for the 2023 campaign.

The 20-year-old steps up off the back of his first full season in the GB3 Championship, where he netted a maiden victory at Spa-Francorchamps.

“I am absolutely thrilled about this opportunity. Having raced in both FRECA and GB3 championships, stepping up to the FIA F3 feels like the right next move,” said Smith, who’ll get his first taste of F3 machinery during pre-season testing next February.

“I’m certainly aware that it will be a challenging season in which I will have to learn and adapt continuously, but I am convinced I am taking on this challenge with the right team. VAR’s achievements already in their first year competing in FIA F3 are a clear indicator of their level of commitment, and I look very much forward to get started with them and the championship!”

Beginning his single-seater career in the 2017-18 New Zealand Formula 1600 Championship, Smith scored his first podium finish that same season, before progressing up to the Australian F4 Championship in 2018.

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A consistent performer, Smith would finish eighth and seventh in the Standings across his two seasons in the Championship. Alongside this, he gained further experience in both the 2019 Toyota Racing Series and the F3 Asian Championship, finishing 10th in his sophomore Asian F3 campaign at the beginning of 2020.

After almost a year out, Smith dovetailed a full season in the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine with a three-round appearance in the GB3 Championship. Remaining in GB3 for the 2022 season, the Australian went on to achieve 18 points-scoring finishes in 24 races, including one victory and a further podium finish.

Van Amersfoort CEO Rob Niessink added: “We are excited to have Tommy as part of our driver line-up. He is new to the FIA F3 Championship, but Tommy’s time spent in FRECA and GB3 will certainly help him to pick up quickly.

“Tommy is very eager to learn and quickly book progress. He showed this positive attitude already in the past and that will help both Tommy and the crew to jumpstart the season. We look very much forward to supporting him in this important next step of his career!”