F3 title contender Ilott to make F2 debut
Formula 3 European Championship star Callum Ilott is to make his Formula 2 race debut supporting the British Grand Prix at Silverstone this weekend.
The 18-year-old from Hertfordshire, who is fourth in the F3 standings, will drive for Italian team Trident in a one-off outing.
Ilott replaces Raffaele Marciello, who in turn took over from Sergio Canamasas for a one-off at the Red Bull Ring last weekend, after Canamasas had switched to Rapax.
While Ilott only completed the deal on Tuesday, and will not even sit in the Trident car until he has a seat fitting on Wednesday afternoon, he has driven an F2 car before.
He tested for ART Grand Prix in last year’s post-season Abu Dhabi GP2 test, before the series was renamed F2 for 2017.
“I’m really happy to make my F2 race debut, especially at the British Grand Prix, competing in front of the famous home crowd that so many drivers have described as a special and unique experience,” said Ilott.
“It’s a great opportunity to get a chance to race in a category I’ve definitely got my eye on for the future.
“The opportunity has come together late so we had no chance to get on the sim or spend much time with the engineers unfortunately.
“Nonetheless, I still want to make the most of the weekend, aiming to do a good job in qualifying, use the races to get useful experience of the different tyres, and gain a good understanding of tyre management, an element that makes a big difference in the category.”
Trident boss Giacomo Ricci said: “We are honoured to have Callum on board – he is one of the most talented drivers and despite not having any opportunity to test I’m sure he will be impressive out there.”
Ilott added that the drive comes with the support of his F3 squad Prema Powerteam, whose sister team Prema Racing is the top operation in F2 and could be a logical destination for Ilott in 2018.
“I’d really like to thank Rene [team boss Rosin] and Prema for enabling me to race this weekend,” he said.
“They know and understand I just want to drive racing cars and they could see the value in getting some F2 seat time this year, especially after spending time at Monaco with the Prema F2 outfit.”
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