The 2020 FIA Formula 3 vice-champion Théo Pourchaire will make the expected jump up to FIA Formula 2 in 2021 as he returns to ART.
The 17-year-old Frenchman was the unexpected superstar in Formula 3 last season where he scored two wins as well as a further six podiums, with four of those coming in the last four races of the season.
He missed out on the title to Oscar Piastri by just three points but his performances earned him his first taste of Formula 2 with HWA Racelab at the Bahrain double-header.
While Pourchaire didn’t set the world alight over the two weekends, he gained valuable experience as he prepares to tackle his first full season at this level with the championship again in his crosshairs.
“I am very happy to be able to continue with ART Grand Prix,” said Sauber junior driver Pourchaire. “This team gave me the opportunity to drive in F3 last year and now accompanies me to the gates of Formula 1, in F2.
“This year my aim does not change, I’m still aiming for the top. I would like to thank Sauber Academy, ART Grand Prix, my sponsors, and my family. I feel perfectly ready for this new season. I will probably be the youngest driver in the F2 championship this year, so the goal will be to gain as much experience as possible and to progress throughout the season.”
The second ART driver is still to be confirmed for 2021 but it is likely that Renault junior driver Christian Lundgaard will remain with the team after performing well last year.
ART Team Manager Sebastien Phillippe said: “Theo’s progress has been remarkable since his debut in motorsports, F4 champion in 2019, he ended last season as F3 runner-up. Beyond the final result, he impressed the team by his evolution in a delicate context and with an extremely competitive field.
“Théo had nothing to gain by doing a second season in F3 and his move to F2 is the logical next step of our collaboration. The step is high, but between his talent, his determination and his thirst for learning, I’m sure he can make this transition a success”