The FIA Formula 3 Championship returns to action tomorrow just three days after a frenetic opening round in Barcelona that saw three first time race-winners standing on the top step of the podium at the sunny Circuit de Catalunya.

Starting tomorrow, the official two-day test at the Circuito de Jerez, Spain, will give all 30 drivers the opportunity to put their learnings from the first weekend of racing into practice ahead of the second round of the season in Le Castellet on 25 -27 June.

WHAT TO EXPECT

Running from Wednesday, 12 May to Thursday, 13 May, the in-season test at the Circuito de Jerez will be split into a morning and afternoon session with a total of 12 hours of track time available across the two days.

The morning session on both days will run from 9am to 12pm (local time). The afternoon testing window on Wednesday will open at 2pm and close at 5pm while on Thursday the session will begin at 1pm and finish at 4pm (local time).

Teams will be testing their cars on Pirelli’s P Zero medium tyres, the same compound that featured at the pre-season outing in Spielberg. The medium compound will see its next race-weekend action when the field returns to the Red Bull Ring for the third round of the 2021 campaign at the beginning of July.

Smolyar won the opening race of the season in Barcelona

THE STORY SO FAR

The official in-season test for the 2021 FIA Formula 3 Championship will get underway at the Circuito de Jerez tomorrow, just three days after an action-packed opening round in Barcelona which saw Alexander Smolyar, Olli Caldwell and Dennis Hauger all crowned F3 race-winners for the first time.

With the debut of a brand-new three-race weekend format and 18 fresh faces lining up on the grid, pre-season excitement was at an all-time high ahead of the opening round at the Circuit de Barcelona-Cataluyna. The weekend did not disappoint, providing maiden victories for three drivers and first-time podium finishes for two rookies, Caio Collet and Victor Martins.

ART Grand Prix’s Smolyar impressed in the opening race of the season, taking home his first win after qualifying in P11 on Friday and starting Race 1 on the front row. The Russian driver charged ahead of reverse polesitter Jonny Edgar in the opening stages of the race and then carefully managed his tyres out in front to claim victory ahead of Trident’s Clément Novalak and MP Motorsport’s Collet, who sealed a podium finish on his F3 debut.

It was PREMA Racing’s Caldwell who came home victorious after a frenetic Race 2, which saw not one but two front row collisions in just 22 laps around the circuit. The PREMA ace drove a calm and measured race, finding himself in the perfect position to seal his first victory when frontrunners Matteo Nannini and Hauger came together just minutes before the chequered flag. The young Brit crossed the line ahead of MP’s Martins, the second rookie to stand on the podium in as many races, and Mercedes Junior Frederik Vesti.

Hauger claimed PREMA’s second win of the weekend in Race 3 with a controlled lights-to-flag victory over Trident’s Jack Doohan, who missed out on Pole in Friday’s Qualifying session by just 0.006s. After a four way battle off the line, Hauger drove an assured race out in front building up a comfortable 4s lead to his academy-mate Doohan, who finished in P2. The Red Bull duo were joined on the podium by HWA RACELAB’s Nannini, who collected his second podium in Formula 3.

The twelve hours of running at the Circuito de Jerez this week will give the teams and drivers the chance to put their learnings from the first three races of the season into action. It will also offer them valuable preparation time on the medium tyres, which will see their next outing at the third round of the campaign in Austria 2 – 4 July.

DRIVERTEAM
1Dennis HaugerPREMA Racing
2Arthur Leclerc
3Olli Caldwell
4Jack DoohanTrident
5Clément Novalak
6David Schumacher
7Frederik VestiART Grand Prix
8Alex Smolyar
9Juan Manuel Correa
10Jak CrawfordHitech Grand Prix
11Ayumu Iwasa
12Roman Stanek
14Matteo NanniniHWA RACELAB
15Oliver Rasmussen
16Rafael Villagomez
17Victor MartinsMP Motorsport
18Caio Collet
19Tijmen van der Helm
20László TóthCampos Racing
21Lorenzo Colombo
22Amaury Cordeel
23Ido CohenCarlin Buzz Racing
24Kaylen Frederick
25Jonny Edgar
26Calan WilliamsJenzer Motorsport
27Pierre-Louis Chovet
28Filip Ugran
29Logan SargeantCharouz Racing System
30Enzo Fittipaldi
31Reshad de Gerus