Oliver Bearman has been rewarded with FP1 outings with Haas in Mexico and Abu Dhabi, as Gabriel Bortoleto joins McLaren academy.
F2 front-runner and Ferrari Academy Driver Bearman has been rewarded with FP1 outings with Haas in the upcoming races in Mexico and Abu Dhabi which is part of the FIA’s rookie programme. It will be the Brit’s first official F1 run apart from testing old cars.
Haas hasn’t noted which driver he will replace in which grands prix, but Bearman will be present in this weekend’s Qatar GP to immerse himself with the team’s procedures. He becomes the latest Ferrari driver to get a F1 test run with the American outfit.
“We’re very happy to offer Oliver Bearman these outings in Mexico and Abu Dhabi,” stated Guenther Steiner. “He’s had a stellar rookie season in Formula 2, four wins is testament to that, and as part of the Ferrari Driver Academy – we know his background preparation coming into these weekends will be first-rate. We look forward to welcoming Oliver into the team and have him drive the VF-23.”
At the same time, Bearman added: “I am so happy to be joining MoneyGram Haas F1 Team driving in Mexico and Abu Dhabi. Getting to Formula 1 has been my dream since I was go-karting so to be driving a car for the first time this year is really special. I’m grateful to the team, and of course Ferrari, for allowing me this chance. I’m working hard to make sure I’m ready to support the team as best I can on both occasions.”
In another F1 driver news, McLaren announced the hiring of 2023 F3 champion Bortoleto in its Driver Development Programme. The Brazilian will be under the mentorship of Emanuele Pirro, who was hired to run the porgramme earlier in the year.
Bortoleto is the latest signing in the programme which includes the likes of Pato O’Ward, Ryo Hirakawa and Ugo Ugochkwu. McLaren also announced the signing or F4 driver Brando Badoer – son of former F1 driver and longtime Ferrari tester, Luca.
Badoer joins on a one-year ‘Optioned Driver’ programme where he will be assessed by McLaren in 2024 and if he ticks all the boxes, he will be rewarded with a full-time seat in the following season.
“I’m pleased to welcome Gabriel to the McLaren Driver Development programme,” said Pierro. “I’ve known him well since the beginning of his motorsport career and he’s got all that is needed on and off track to be a star. He also fits very well with our team culture at McLaren. I look forward to working with Gabriel and helping him develop in his motorsport career.
“I also look forward to working with Brando Badoer, who we sign as an Optioned Driver, as we continue to evaluate him over the next year. They join our talented line-up of drivers who we will be working with on their individual development, to give them the tools they need to progress in their careers.”
At the same time, Bortoleto added: “I’m excited to be joining the McLaren Driver Development programme. I’m grateful to McLaren and Emanuele for giving me this opportunity. I’ve already been in the MTC for a tour and to meet the team, which was a really nice experience. I’m looking forward to continuing working on my development alongside a great team.”
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