Luciano Bacheta secured the FIA Formula Two Championship and a prize test with the Williams Formula 1 team at Monza last weekend.
Third place in the final race of the season behind winner Christopher Zanella and Kevin Mirocha was enough for the 22-year-old from Romford in Essex to clinch the title having led the points standings since the opening race of the year.
15-year-old Matheo Tuscher was the only driver that could stop Bacheta heading into the final race, and qualified sixth, one spot ahead of Bacheta. Bacheta got the better start however to move ahead of his rival before going on to finish third.
Zanella’s victory was his second of the year and secured third place in the standings for last year’s vice-champion. Mirocha completed a good weekend with second to add to his third from Saturday’s race. Tuscher finished the race fifth, behind Mihai Marinescu. Alex Fontana, Dino Zamparelli, Axcil Jefferies, Harald Schlegelmilch and Daniel McKenzie completed the top ten.
“It’s still sinking in,” said Bacheta after the race. “The first feeling was just relief and then happiness and then every emotion! I’m still kind of dazed by it all. In the race, as soon as I was past Matheo I felt in control from that point on and I just thought, ‘let’s have a good race’. It felt really good and a great way to secure the title.
“Throughout the season we’ve always been up there and challenging for the win but certainly everyone else caught us up as the season went on. Of course there’s a few things I would have done differently but overall it’s been a very solid season and my rival Matheo has been more like a team-mate as we get on so well.
“We’ve got a few ideas for 2013 but I don’t want to say too much just yet. As for the Williams F1 test, this is just insane. I can’t believe it and probably won’t until I’m actually sat in the car. It’s just incredible and I have to say a big thank you to Comma and the rest of my sponsors, and everyone who has helped me this season.”
F2 chief Jonathan Palmer said: “Luciano has done an absolutely superb job this season and is a very worthy Formula Two champion. I’ve known him well since his early days of T-Cars back in 2006 and have followed his rising career ever since. From his double win at the opening rounds at Silverstone, he has shown outstanding talent and consistency in a very competitive field to dominate throughout. I’m very confident he will impress at his Williams F1 test and that F2 has given him a unique opportunity to prove his ability and earn international acclaim to promote his career.”
Sir Frank Williams added: “I’d like to pass on my personal congratulations to Luciano for winning the F2 title, a feat made all the more impressive by the way he achieved it with an unprecedented four consecutive wins at the start of the season. We look forward to putting him through his paces when he tests with us and I’m sure he will learn a great deal from the experience.”