The 2024 FIA Formula 3 season is just around the corner with the drivers preparing to battle in Round one at the Bahrain International Circuit.

Before the lights go out and we go racing, Formula 3 CEO Bruno Michel has been reflecting on last year’s Championship battle. He also gives his verdict on whether anyone can challenge PREMA Racing, before also sharing some advice to the rookie drivers.


We had a very strong 2023 season, with a lot of strong drivers doing a very good job. What I love is that both the Teams and Drivers’ Championships went down to the wire at the final event. This is always what we want to see.

For the Drivers’ Championship, Gabriel Bortoleto arrived at Monza with a big margin ahead of the others, so it was not a big surprise that he won the title, but he did a fantastic job. He was followed from afar by drivers that did quite well also, ones we are going to see this year in Formula 2 which is always what we are trying to achieve. The top three drivers from Formula 3 last year are going to be in Formula 2 this season, which proves that the ladder is working quite well.

Then we had this very intense fight between Trident and PREMA that went to the last race. PREMA won but it was very close, and we hope that we see these kind of title fights that go to the end again this year.

Gabriel Bortoleto won the Drivers Championship as a rookie last season
Gabriel Bortoleto won the Drivers' Championship as a rookie last season


PREMA has the edge and because they have been winning the title for a few years they always have the advantage of having very strong drivers wanting to join them. So that makes them quite a strong team and this year again they have a good line-up.

But Trident has a strong team too and they will be challenging PREMA. Behind those two are some very good teams who also have some good driver line-ups. I'm sure MP Motorsport will do well again this year. Campos Racing will also probably do well, and Hitech Pulse-Eight also have a good line-up.

ART had a difficult season last year, but that is unlike them. Normally they do well, so I am sure they will be looking to try and do better this season. So, let's see. It's always interesting to imagine what it is going to look like, but I am sure there is going to be a great fight for the Teams' Championship.


The first point is that it is important that they integrate within the teams rapidly. Second thing is that they are going to race for the first time alongside Formula 1 which adds to the pressure of the weekend.

They are being watched by the Formula 1 world this year. But also, being with Formula 1 means you have less track time than you may have in other categories such as Formula 4 and Formula Regional, so they will have to get used to that.

One free practice session, a short qualifying session and then immediately race one and race two, so it’s a new format for them to figure out, with a reverse grid also in the Sprint Race. All of this is something they will have to understand rapidly to be competitive as quickly as possible.

There are 17 rookies on the grid including Martinius Stenshorne L and Alex Dunne R
There are 17 rookies on the grid including Martinius Stenshorne (L) and Alex Dunne (R)

But the teams know their business and they know how to train drivers. It's also part of their job to make the drivers comfortable with all these new scenarios as early as possible. But also, lots of these drivers have been in conversation with their teams since the end last year which means they have been working with them from quite early.


Melbourne is a fantastic event. Last year was the first time we went with F2 and F3, and we were really happy to be there. It is a fantastic track, and it is going to be sold out on Saturday and Sunday, and it is nearly sold out for Friday. So, it means hundreds and hundreds of thousands of people are coming to the track.

They know how to treat the fans and they know how to make sure there is a very strong interaction between the fans and our teams. We saw it last year with all the fans coming into the paddock and the garage area and being able to see the teams working on their cars.

The engineers, the mechanics and the drivers of course were always there and always happy to have contact with the fans, so Melbourne is fantastic for that, and we are really looking forward to going back.

Monaco is a very precious race. It's something that we have been willing to do for quite a long time. We did one race with GP3 in Monaco a long time ago and we wanted to continue with Formula 3. So, it's a great opportunity to do that, and it's a great opportunity for the drivers.

Qualifying is always difficult in Monaco and that's why we are doing two groups because we cannot have 30 cars together on the track in Qualifying otherwise it's a mess at Rascasse. It's a fantastic thing for the drivers to learn.

Formula 3 will return to Melbourne in 2024
Formula 3 will return to Melbourne in 2024

On top of that, it’s so prestigious to go and race in Monaco, I think it's also part of the strength of our Championship to be involved in such a big event. Those two rounds are very important in our Championship, and we want to do it for many years.


Continue watching us because our races are amazing. It's always incredibly interesting and attractive for the fans to follow drivers and to know that the best of them will be in Formula 2 the following year.

I am sure the fans will also follow the drivers in Formula 2 that were in Formula 3 last year because it's interesting to see the fight between rookies and the more experienced drivers. So come over and watch our races or watch them on TV, because you are not going to be disappointed.

Something always happens and you will love our racing. Everybody has the same car, even if the setup is not always the same, but that makes it quite close. It's a Drivers' Championship and that's why it is fantastic to see. At the end of the day the best drivers win, and they are the ones that continue in Formula 2, and they are the ones that when they get to Formula 1, they are ready.