Home Featured Bortoleto aims to extend Trident’s Spa win record, not thinking about title

Bortoleto aims to extend Trident’s Spa win record, not thinking about title

by Ida Wood

Photo: Formula Motorsport Ltd

Gabriel Bortoleto is not setting high targets for Spa-Francorchamps, despite the chance of becoming FIA Formula 3 champion, but he hopes his team extends its winning run at the track.

The Fernando Alonso protege has a lead of 43 points heading into the penultimate round, and needs a lead of at least 65 points after Saturday’s sprint race or 39 points after Sunday’s feature race to wrap up the title this weekend.

“I’m quite confident for this weekend. It’s a track that I like, and last season I won here. It’s a track that I enjoy racing and there will be a lot of moves for sure because of the long straights. Let’s see about the weather as well. Looks quite unpredictable for now, or predictable in the side of wet. Can’t wait to be in the car,” he said to media on Thursday.

“I think the main reason [I’ve built a large lead] is that my car is very good, and it’s always competitive enough to be in the top ten, top 12, the reverse grid [positions]. Even if our worst result in a quali was P9 in the last race.

“I think it’s all about finishing the races, making the moves when it needs to be done and not taking unnecessary risks. And that was I would say my season so far. I hope I can continue doing the same as I did the whole season, but back on winning because I did win my two first [rounds], but then I didn’t any more.”

Bortoleto drives for Trident, a team which has won at Spa in every year of FIA F3 and its predecessor series GP3 since 2017. So a return to winning ways for Bortoleto would extend Trident’s Spa streak to seven years.

Trident’s GP3/FIA F3 winners at Spa
2015: Luca Ghiotto   2017: Giuliano Alesi   2018: David Beckmann   2019: Pedro Piquet   2020: Lirim Zendeli   2021: Jack Doohan (x2)   2022: Zane Maloney

“It’s a track that normally we are very quick. Honestly, I don’t know why exactly this track, not others. But I hope I can keep the winning streak of the team overall, and they’ve shown mega potential here.”

While he wants to win again, it is not a need for Bortoleto and he says he will not be letting either that or his proximity to the title negatively impact his performance this weekend.

“I don’t care [specifically about the title], to be fair. I think if I do well, like if I’ve been doing well this season it’s because I’m not putting pressure on myself. It’s my rookie season at the end of the day. I never had the pressure to win the championship in my first season, so it’s not now that I’m going to put it on myself.

“I think I will keep doing what I’m doing the whole season, pushing to be in the front and winning races. If it’s possible, great. We will be there. If it’s not, it’s life, we do what we can. But yeah, I’m really not looking forward [going] ‘oh, I need to win here or there’, I’m just driving and let’s see how things go.”