Stefano Domenicali has revealed that two high profile names were prevented from returning to the FIA European Formula 3 Championship in 2016 following the rule changes made towards the back end of last year.
2015 season runner-up Antonio Giovinazzi and the ever-popular Tatiana Calderon were set to remain in the championship into the current season before rules were introduced preventing drivers continuing in the series for more than three full seasons, meaning the duo were forced to seek employment elsewhere.
Giovinazzi has moved up into the GP2 Series with Prema Powerteam, while Calderon has joined Arden Motorsport in the GP3 Series as well as Teo Martin Motorsport in EuroFormula Open.
But FIA Single Seater Commission president Domenicali insists the rule changes were aimed to keep the flow of young and up-coming drivers coming into the series rather than eliminate any special case, even if the Italian would have liked to have seen both Giovinazzi and Calderon back in the series in 2016.
“I would have loved to see these two drivers in the championship,” said Domenicali. “When we thought about this point we were not looking at the names of the drivers because then you are being influenced by the cases.
“We wanted to avoid very good drivers with large experience putting a cap on the aspirations of drivers coming in.
“I think that they [Giovinazzi and Calderon] have good opportunities for their future – what is important is structural change to be clear for the future.”