British F3 champion Jack Harvey will race for Lotus GP in the GP3 Series next year, it has been confirmed.
The 19-year-old had tested for both his F3 team Carlin and ART-run Lotus during post-season testing, but has signed with the French squad who have won two drivers’ titles and all three teams’ titles since GP3 began in 2010.
Harvey’s fellow Racing Steps Foundation-backed driver James Calado made the same move from F3 to GP3 with Lotus in 2011 and finished runner-up to teammate and new Williams driver Valtteri Bottas before graduating to GP2 with the squad, where he will remain in 2013.
It won’t be Harvey’s first time racing at Formula 1 race weekends having previously competed in Formula BMW Europe in 2009 and 2010.
“The relationship with Lotus GP is fantastic and I’m proud to have the opportunity to enter the GP3 Series with them,” said the Lincolnshire ace. “I would like to follow in the steps of another Racing Steps Foundation-backed Lotus GP driver, my fellow countryman James Calado, who was GP3 runner-up in 2010.
“We learned a lot during testing and coming to grips with the new tyres will be very important. I am looking forward to the challenge of being in GP3 and especially with Lotus GP, because the team has a great heritage.
“If I work the right way and have a good approach, I too should be able to climb the ladder like other great drivers who have joined forces with Lotus GP in the past. Our aim has to be to push for the championship.”
Team boss Frederic Vasseur added: “Jack is the latest Racing Steps Foundation driver to join forces with Lotus GP and I have to say our relationship with the RSF is extremely positive and productive and I already know Jack to be a proud representative of this strong partnership.
“Despite his young age, Jack’s achievements and personality convinced us he has all the qualities needed to succeed in the GP3 Series, where our aim in 2013 will be to return to the first place we lost in the drivers’ championship last year after two consecutive titles with Esteban Gutiérrez and Valtteri Bottas.”