European F3 Open champion Alex Fontana has graduated to the FIA Formula Two Championship, it has been announced.
Fontana, a 19-year-old of dual Swiss-Greek nationality, sampled the F2 car at the two-day test in Barcelona at the end of last year, finishing the second day as fourth quickest overall.
He took two wins on his way to the title in the European F3 Open, which supported F2 at a number of races. He also made a one-off appearance in GP3 at Spa, finishing sixth in the second of the weekend's races. He was known to be evaluating the two series, but has settled with F2.
“After the European Formula 3 Open title last year, Formula Two was the natural step for my career,” he said. “I first sampled the F2 car in Barcelona and found it really fun to drive. I also really like the F2 series and think it will develop me as a driver.
“People in Switzerland are also very excited and supportive of my venture, just as they were for the great Swiss driver Clay Regazzoni who raced in the early Formula Two and was champion in 1970. Hopefully we will see lots of Swiss and Greek flags, my second nationality, in the paddock. My goals for 2012 are to be one of the main protagonists but we will have to see and take it race by race.”
Formula Two Chief Executive Jonathan Palmer added: “Alex looked really strong last December when he tested the Williams F2 car at Barcelona, finishing just two tenths off 2011 runner up Christopher Zanella. He is a very good driver with a great attitude and I’m delighted he’s made the sensible decision to progress his career in the equal environment of F2 – where he has every chance of winning races.”