As all racing drivers will tell you: sometimes with a certain team, things just click. That is certainly the case for David Beckmann and Trident. For whatever reason, the German’s partnership with race winners ART Grand Prix didn’t work out last season, but he already looks much more at home with the Italian side, who he previously raced for in 2018, in GP3.
The heart of the team remains the same from his half-season with them in GP3 - when he scored three wins and a podium – while it has also helped him to reunite with his engineer from that campaign.
The German has finished in the points in all four races so far, as well as scoring a double podium in Spielberg this weekend – a feat he never achieved in 2019. He explained: “Right from when I went back to the factory, I just knew that this was more or less my second family, in motorsport at least. We understand each other extremely well because we have had a very successful past together.”
Beckmann is the team’s highest scoring driver so far this campaign, so it feels strange to think that until a few days before the season opener, he didn’t even have a Formula 3 drive. A late switch saw the German replace Devlin DeFrancesco just in time for Round 1.
“Their trio was fixed with Ollie Caldwell, Lirim Zendeli and Devlin DeFrancesco,” he continued. “I was concentrating on racing out of formula cars, partly because of the financial side – but then, I got a call from ]Team manager] Giacomo Ricci, who told me that there could be a space as Devlin might not be able to drive.
“He asked what I was doing this year and I was offered an extremely good deal. I was extremely happy to be driving this year, because F1 is still the goal and you only achieve this by coming through F3 and F2.
“I was extremely happy to return to Trident. They are a good team and they’re a winning team and I am really pleased to be driving here.”
His late entry to the Championship meant that Beckmann missed the entirety of the pre-season testing programme in Bahrain and was starting cold in Round 1. Free Practice on the Friday was the first time he had driven the car in eight months.
With zero testing experience at Trident in F3 this year, Round 1 was effectively a free hit for the German – albeit a very successful one, with a P7 and P4 finish. This left the team with plenty of work to do between the two weekends though, as they adjusted the car to his liking.
“We had a really good improvement compared to last weekend,” he explained. “We adjusted the car a bit and it went in the right direction and we were able to score really good points. Two podiums is always really good. It had been a while since I was last on the podium, so it was nice to be able to bring some trophies back.
“We are working really well together, and it feels very similar to 2018, which I think is the reason behind the good results.”
Thanks to his consistency this season, Beckmann is well in the hunt for the title, but could do with adding a race win to his collection in Budapest next weekend, to boost his chances.
Yet, it says a lot about the German that he isn’t getting ahead of himself. Scoring good points for the team is his priority: a race win would be a bonus.
“At the moment, I am really confident in the car and the team,” he said. “You can always find a bit of time here and there, but I think that I done a good job.
“The Qualifying was great this weekend and that shows that I am on the limit with the car more or less. I think that if we can have a good setup in Hungary, like we did at the Red Bull Ring, then we have good potential to score at least a podium, and you never know, maybe a win.”