The FIA European Formula 3 Championship field will rise to a season-high twenty-two cars at the Nurburgring following the announcement that Carlin, Motopark and Van Amersfoort Racing will field an extra car this weekend.
For both Carlin and Motopark, it means a fifth entry alongside their regular drivers, with the FIA having relaxed the ruling that teams can only field four cars in the championship, a move that was made ahead of the 2016 season.
Joining Carlin will be current Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 Championship leader Sacha Fenestraz, with the French-Argentine driver making a one-off appearance in European Formula 3 as he looks to explore his options for the 2018 season.
“I’m really excited to be getting this chance to drive an F3 car,” said Fenestraz. “It’s going to be tough, but my goal is to learn as much as I can, take in as much information and drive fast!
“I like the Nürburgring a lot. I set the track record there earlier in the year and got my second win of the season there, so I’m looking forward to getting back on the track.
“It’s going to be a great learning curve spending time with Carlin. They are nice people and very professional. They also like to work extremely hard. They have really strong drivers there who are also there to work hard, so I’m happy to be joining them and seeing what I can do.”
German outfit Motopark has announced that Romanian Petru Florescu will see out the season with the team, racing this weekend at the Nurburgring as well as the races at the Red Bull Ring and the Hockenheimring. The eighteen-year-old currently races in the EuroFormula Open, and is another assessing his options for next season.
“Team Motopark are not only very quick in the championship, but have also impressed me with their rigorous processes and clear structure,” said Florescu.
“They will no doubt be able to help me understand the FIA F3 car, tyres and championship and even though it won’t be an easy endeavour as the level in the championship is really high, they will make me push myself during these three races.
“On top of everything all the tracks are also new to me, so it will be a steep learning curve but I welcome the chance to get ready for next year!”
The fourth Van Amersfoort Racing seat will be filled by Belgian Max Defourny, another Eurocup frontrunner, who turned down an earlier opportunity to race for the team at Spa-Francorchamps as it would have meant him losing the possibility of being classed as a rookie in 2018 in the championship.
“Of course I am really happy to be here this weekend and have the opportunity to drive at the Nurburgring with Van Amersfoort Racing,” said Defourny.
“We will obviously do our best on both sides to get the best out of it and see what it holds up for the future. Of course a big thanks to the team.”