Home Formula 3FIA F3 Championship F2 and F3 teams looking forward to being back in Melbourne’s paddock

F2 and F3 teams looking forward to being back in Melbourne’s paddock

by Ida Wood

Photo: Formula Motorsport Ltd

Formula 2 and the FIA Formula 3 Championship raced in Australia for the first time last year, and the European-based teams are looking forward to doing so again next weekend.

The trip down under to race in Melbourne was over 13,000 miles longer than any other teams had gone on before that point, raising questions about costs and logistics. In the end F2 and F3’s organiser paid the freight costs for shipping all the cars and equipment, with teams financially responsible for getting their staff to and from the event.

A rainstorm and some on-track chaos reduced the amount of running for F2 and F3 drivers, but they mostly used the word “amazing” when describing the challenge of the Albert Park circuit. The teams were also full of praise for the event even though the weekend was a stressful one.

“It was for all the team a great weekend, even for us. The results were not the best, but overall I would say it was something positive,” Prema’s team principal Rene Rosin said recently.

Of course it was challenging, logistically, but at the end we were very well welcomed by the organisation. Everything organisation-wise was spot on. And we are really looking forward to go again down there.

Hitech GP boss Oliver Oakes added: “Obviously it’s a long way to go. That’s not lost on everyone. But I have to say last year they put on a great event. I mean they always do for F1. But I think for us support series, it’s nice to go somewhere where they really want to have us there. And they were fantastic for us with the paddock and everything.

“I think when you have events like that, I shouldn’t say it, but for the guys in the team it’s actually the excitement of going somewhere new. A new circuit, a completely different country, and everyone was really excited to see that. And we’re looking forward to go back there again. Other than the flight.”

MP Motorsport’s team manager Jeremy Cotterill said the 2023 trip “was great” despite the rain.

“‘Come to Australia,’ they said. ‘The weather’s fantastic,’ they said. It was so wet. It was a great experience. My whole team enjoyed it, they loved it. They didn’t have the best weekend, but as an experience it was great, we’re looking forward to going back.”

Another to share his grievances about the lengthy flight to Australia was ART Grand Prix boss Sebastien Philippe, but he is looking forward to races on a track he thinks his team will be competitive on.

“The race was a very good experience, something completely new for us,” said Campos Racing’s team principal Adrian Campos Jr. “And I think it’s nice to have F2 and F3, both championships, getting so global.”

As for those making their first trip down under in 2024, F3 rookie Arvid Lindblad expects those who raced in Melbourne last year will not have much of an advantage due to the championship using a new tyre compound this season.