F3 Rookies : Article by Zito Francesca and chart by Faliero Giulianna
We have reached over halfway through the F3 season, and it is time to report on this year’s rookies. There are those who have pleasantly surprised us, and those who have failed to confirm expectations so far.
TOP: Isack Hadjar and Ollie Bearman
Many driver are doing well, but among the rookies there were two who particularly surprised us : Isack Hadjar and Ollie Bearman.
As for the first one, he is part of Red Bull‘s Junior program and made his F3 debut this year with the Hitech team, after making his mark in the Formula Regional championship. Now he is giving even the most experienced drivers like Martins and Leclerc a run for their money: in fact, he has won three races and finished on the podium twice. It must be said that the first victory in Bahrain came as a surprise. The first to cross the finish line was Bearman, but taking the winner’s trophy was Hadjar, following a penalty given to the British driver. In the standings he is now second, one point behind leader Martins. Not bad for a rookie, who especially in the last two rounds at Silverstone and Spielberg is getting noticed and appreciated. Will he be able to maintain this level until the end of the season?
However, Ollie Bearman’s situation is a bit different. He, too, is part of a junior program, the Ferrari Driver Academy, and is racing in F3 with Prema this year. The British driver has made himself particularly popular in these last few rounds. At Silverstone he made us enjoy a race showing what he is capable of, taking the podium.
Moreover, in Spielberg he took the podium in Feature Race, after a sprint race that did not go much in his favor. If we are looking at results, the British driver does not seem to be as consistent as his colleague Hadjar, but it must be said that luck is not much on his side. He often gets involved in accidents where he is not at fault. In conclusion, Bearman is also among the promising rookies, and we hope that he can prove his potential in the upcoming races as well.
FLOP : Gregoire Saucy and David Vidales
While some rookies in the F3 category are surprising us, there are drivers like Saucy and Vidales who are not keeping expectations high.
Saucy is definitely the driver everyone bet on at the beginning of the season, after winning the Formula Regional in 2021 with Team ART Grand Prix. However, the Swiss driver disappointed everyone: he started well by taking a podium in the Feature Race in Bahrain, but then nothing more. After this race he did not gain any more points, always ending up lower than the top ten. Saucy, therefore, is not shining: it certainly takes time to adapt to a new category, but the Swiss is taking a little too long.
Vidales has, on the other hand, been more consistent, but his season so far has not been what one would expect from a driver who raced with Prema Team. He only got one win, the one at his home race in Spain, and then not much more. He earned a few points by finishing a few races in the top ten, but his best finish was eighth place. The Spanish rider was also the protagonist of some crashes and contacts.
An overall view
As we have analyzed, the performance of our rookies in F3 has been quite up and down; the transition to such a prestigious and competitive new category is by no means trivial. Each pilot has a different background and ability, which also implies a different ability to adapt and perform. However, as we come to mid-season, it is good to take a general look at their performance !
So here in the interactive chart below you find represented the results obtained by Hadjar, Bearman, Vidales and Saucy in the first 5 races of the season.
We will see who among the rookies can keep the level high and who will bounce back in the second half of the season!