ART Grand Prix has announced three drivers for the 2020 Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine season, with 2020 Italian Formula 4 Champion Gabriele Mini being joined by Dutchman Thomas ten Brinke and Swiss racer Grégoire Saucy.
Mini had a sensational 2020 campaign as he became the youngest driver ever to win the Italian F4 title, with the fifteen-year-old taking four wins with Prema Powerteam. He also took a victory in the ADAC Formula 4 championship.
“I’m extremely happy to be joining ART Grand Prix for the 2021 season in the very highly rated Formula Regional by Alpine Championship,” said Mini. “ART Grand Prix is a very successful team and I felt good with them right from my very first test at the Paul Ricard circuit last December.
“I’m aware that stepping up from F4 to F Regional won’t be easy but I also know that I am in good hands as I will be able to learn a lot and benefit from the huge experience this team has.
“I would like to thank the team for its trust in me, my management company All Road Management, my sponsors and the Italian federation for their continuous support. I’m looking forward to getting back in the car and to working hard to achieve strong results.”
Ten Brinke is another fifteen-year-old making waves in the single-seater scene, with the Dutchman having impressed in the F4 Spanish Championship with MP Motorsport in 2020. In the fifteen races he competed in, he won once and finished on the podium nine times in finishing third in the standings.
“I have to admit, it’s going quick. Very quick!” said ten Brinke. “A few months ago, I was driving go karts, then I had the chance to compete in the Formula 4 Series in Spain and now I am already at the next chapter.
“However, it all feels natural and thanks to the support of my dad and my sponsors I can realize my ambition and dream. But the dream isn’t finished yet … I will be a rookie and one of the youngest in the championship.
“The goal? To improve myself step by step and get on the podium a few times. This is the team that can help me achieve that, and I can’t wait to work with them.”
Saucy was one of the drivers to race for ART Grand Prix in the final season of the Formula Renault Eurocup in 2020 alongside Victor Martins and Paul Aron, and the twenty-one-year-old will be looking to build on his performances from last season to fight for the championship.
“2020 went really well with ART Grand Prix, I learned a lot and although there were ups and downs, this was my best year of competition so far,” said Saucy. “I am therefore very happy to continue with ART Grand Prix.
“My goal is to use everything I learned last season to be at my best from the first race. I look forward to working with my engineer and with the team and I thank Mr Guenat, Richard Mille, all my sponsors and ART Grand Prix for giving me the opportunity to continue my career with all the chances on my side.”
Smith Joins Barrichello at JD Motorsport
Australian racer Tommy Smith has become the latest name to join the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine series, with the eighteen-year-old linking up with JD Motorsport.
Smith is the second driver to be confirmed to race for JD Motorsport in 2021, with the Melbourne-born driver linking up with Brazilian racer Eduardo Barrichello, the son of former Formula 1 racer Rubens Barrichello.
Smith was scheduled to race in Europe for the first time in 2020 but school commitments and travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic postponed the move until 2021.
“I’m delighted to welcome Tommy back to our team,” said Team Principal Roberto Cavallari. “Due to his school commitments and the worldwide health emergency, which were incompatible with racing in Europe, he was forced to cancel his program right after testing.
“Despite the challenges, he stayed close to us and for 2021 he will finally be able to run in the full Formula Regional by Alpine Championship.”