“Running Start”

It has been something of a thundering start to the FIA European F3 season for Esteban Ocon.

In his opening three races, the French teenager nabbed one win, two further podiums, two pole positions and one fastest lap.

A stellar effort for a rookie in any championship, let alone a rookie in championship of this calibre. With the Prema Powerteam squad, Ocon has displayed a prowess and ability to adapt not often seen by young drivers at this level.

That the new engine reacts in a similar fashion to the motors that power the lower Formula Renault categories helps, for the 17-year-old is a graduate of just such a category.
That Ocon also has the powerhouse that is Prema and the Lotus F1 Junior Team supporting him must not go underestimated either.

Yet, the débutante will no doubt be looking over his shoulder, because lying in wait is another rookie, Antonio Fuoco – also impressive, also a winner, also a Prema driver, but a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy.

With another rookie, Max Verstappen also proving a speedy young thing and the presence of F3 veterans Felix Rosenqvist and Tom Blomqvist, this is already looking far more competitive than last year’s championship.

But there is still such a long way to go…

Leigh O'Gorman
Leigh O’Gorman

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