Callum Ilott will continue in the FIA European Formula 3 Championship for a third season after being confirmed to race for Prema Powerteam in 2017.
The British racer makes the switch from Van Amersfoort Racing, and after looking into other possible series to race in next season, Ilott felt remaining in Formula 3 made the most sense, especially as it will still only be his third season of car racing.
“We looked at all the possibilities for 2017; GP3, Indy Lights as well as GP2 but in the end with only two years of car racing experience, another year in F3 made the most sense,” said Ilott.
“From my F3 discussions, it is clear that all the teams are working incredibly hard to win the 2017 Championship but PREMA’s record is impeccable, and having decided to return to F3, it is the logical team for me to join.”
Prema have an excellent record in the European Formula 3 Championship, and since it’s reincarnation back in 2012 have taken every Drivers’ Championship title with Daniel Juncadella, Raffaele Marciello, Esteban Ocon, Felix Rosenqvist and most recently Lance Stroll.
Ilott is ready for the challenge at the Italian outfit, and believes they offer a great opportunity to move up the racing ladder, with Prema currently a force in the GP2 Series as well as Formula 3.
“I spent a lot of time in my karting career in Italy, it’s a country I love,” added Ilott. “Just walking around the PREMA factory, the ‘family feeling’ you get with the Italian teams came flooding back. With its successful GP2 squad, I think it’s also a team that offers the chance to climb the ladder to F1.
“PREMA has a full test programme that will see us out before the F3 testing ban comes into effect. The demand for places at PREMA means team mates will no doubt some of my strongest competitors but PREMA has shown it can manage multiple cars and drivers successfully so we can all push together to create some new records in the category.”
Ilott has thanked Van Amersfoort Racing and Team Boss Fritz Van Amersfoort for giving him the opportunity to race for the team in 2016, and felt that they all helped him become a better driver. Ilott won twice with VAR and finished sixth in the championship in 2016, taking four other podium finishes along the way.
“I’d like to thank VAR for everything they did for me in 2016,” said Ilott. “They enabled me to get my first wins in cars, something I’ll never forget.
“Frits and the guys helped me to improve and become a better F3 driver. Now it’s time to take that knowledge and aim for the championship in 2017.”