F2 Teams Conclude Inaugural Shakedown with New Car at Barcelona

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F2 teams complete first shakedown with new car in Barcelona

The primary support championship for Formula 1 bid farewell to its longstanding Dallara-built F2 2018 chassis at the conclusion of the previous year.

The current season marks the debut of its new car, boldly crafted by the Italian manufacturer Dallara. This latest model boasts significantly overhauled aerodynamics, aiming to enhance racing excitement and elevate safety standards.

Before the holiday season, the new car underwent extensive testing, accumulating nearly 5,000km under the guidance of 2022 F2 champion Felipe Drugovich and Tatiana Calderon at various tracks, including Magny-Cours, Jerez, and Bahrain.

F2 Teams Conclude Inaugural Shakedown with New Car at Barcelona
F2 Teams Conclude Inaugural Shakedown with New Car at Barcelona (Credits: Autosport)

Recently, all 11 teams received their initial machines, and a shakedown took place where each team was allowed to utilize one car, resulting in a total of 649 laps over six hours of track running. Prema rookie Andrea Kimi Antonelli led with 53 laps, the highest among all drivers.

F2’s Technical Director, Pierre-Alain Michot, expressed satisfaction, labeling the shakedown as “a good first step” before the upcoming Bahrain round on March 1-2. Michot explained, “The purpose of this shakedown was for the teams to understand how the new car operates, to make sure that all systems are working fine together, and to understand how everything behaves.”

Reflecting on the emotional aspect of witnessing the teams take the new cars on track for the first time, Michot confirmed the absence of red flags, signifying that all cars performed as anticipated. Despite a few adjustments still needed before the first race, Michot reassured that they were close to meeting their requirements.

Victor Martins, an ART Grand Prix driver, shared his positive experience with the new car, noting that the feeling hadn’t undergone significant changes compared to the outgoing model.

He expressed confidence in leveraging his experience for the upcoming season, highlighting a smooth start with no reliability issues during the shakedown.

Martins elaborated on the focus of the day, stating, “Today was also about checking the aerodynamics because that’s the biggest change compared to the previous car, and to start working on a set-up that will be relevant for when we go to Bahrain.”

Despite the emphasis on a step-by-step approach, Martins acknowledged pushing the car and expressed overall satisfaction with the confidence gained from the shakedown.

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