Tatiana Calderon shook down Formula 2’s new car, which is being introduced in 2024, this July and recently shared her first impressions of the chassis with Formula Scout.
The shakedown of the Dallara F2 2024 took place at the Varano circuit in Italy, near the headquarters of chassis supplier Dallara.
Calderon has experience of the its predecessor, the Dallara F2 2018, having contested the 2019 F2 season with Arden and then the last four rounds of 2022 with Charouz Racing System.
Between those campaigns she raced in Super Formula, which used the Dallara SF19. The car, in its updated ‘SF23’ form has – along with Formula 1’s current aerodynamic rules – provided design inspiration for the F2 2024.
“I felt very happy to get the call to do the shakedown,” Calderon told Formula Scout in the Monza paddock during the Italian Grand Prix weekend, when the car was first unveiled. “It’s a lot of responsibility and believing that I could give good feedback.
“I was very impressed with the safety measurements that they took, particularly after 2019. The safety measures of the car are a bigger standard than F1 these days. Straight away when I did my seat fit, I felt like it was easier to accommodate smaller drivers like me. The visibility as well was really good from the cockpit, and it has more versatility to adapt to certain ergonomics part of the car.
“Then to drive it, obviously in a shakedown you have a lot of sensors, you cannot really push the car to the limit, but we had no issues. Hopefully I’ll get another test to do a performance run and see how physically demanding the steering wheel is.
“I’m happy that they took a lot of the things that I maybe wasn’t that comfortable with in the old car, and they’ve made a big step in comfort as well for the driver,” said Calderon about a car that has been designed to accommodate drivers from a greater scope of heights and weights.
In recent years, Alpine driver Esteban Ocon has worked with the FIA on ways to accomodate tall drivers into single-seaters.
Calderon expects to soon be back driving the F2 2024 in order to explore it further. Reigning F2 champion Felipe Drugovich is also believed to be testing the car soon.
“At the moment, they want to see how physically demanding it is on the steering wheel weight. The plan is to do another test, a performance test, in the next couple of months and see from there what the feeling is when you have to push the car to the limit,” said Calderon, who does not rule out racing in F2 next year.
“I wish that that was an option. I’m open to explore the possibility to come back to F2, particularly knowing that it is a new car. That would be great if I can be considered here. I’m also looking at IndyCar and I’m currently racing in endurance. So as many doors as you can open, it’s always going to be helpful.”