The first round of collective preseason testing for Formula 3 Championship took place at the French Paul Ricard venue, where teams and drivers had the chance to kick-off their season. The three Team Trident drivers completed the work program set by the technical staff with good results and collected useful feedback.
The sunny weather of Southern France provided a perfect frame for the debut of the new FIA Formula 3 Championship, which officially opened its new era with a two-day testing session at Circuit Paul Ricard. A pack of 30 cars hit the track on March 20th and 21st, at the same venue set to host the category in June. Niko Kari, Pedro Piquet and Devlin DeFrancesco were behind the wheel of the Trident cars. The work plan set up by the technical staff of the Milan-based squad was centred on long-run performance and comparative tests, in order to gather as much information as possible on the new 2019 Dallara F3 car. The brand-new machinery, showcased at the 2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, immediately impressed the drivers with its aerodynamic downforce compared to the past and with the higher speeds in the corners.
The pack proved really close: in the morning session of the second day of practice, with ideal conditions to simulate qualifying, 23 drivers found themselves covered by less than one second. The level of the competition seems so far stellar. Back to the three Team Trident racers, Kari, Piquet and DeFrancesco sampled an impressive number of technical solutions, allowing the team to gather important information. Their extremely professional attitude was impressive, as went on-track, did not make mistakes and allowed their technical staff to complete the planned work plans.Although at the moment, lap times do not have a particular value, the Team Trident trio certainly showed good potential which makes the team very confident ahead of the season opener. The second round of the pre-season testing will take place in Barcelona from 9 to 10 April, while the third will be in Budapest on April 17th and 18th. The new season will start on the Spanish Grand Prix weekend, from May 10th to 12th.
Giacomo Ricci, Team Manager
"I was really impressed by the extremely high competitive level of the series with the introduction of the new car and the arrival of new teams. We are looking forward to an exciting season. The qualitative level of the championship is high and, in order to excel, we will need to be simply perfect. The performance of many frontrunners is similar and the details will make the difference. In the two-day test at Le Castellet, our drivers completed the work plans set by the technical staff and impressed me for the quality of their work. We didn't look for performance; our best feedback came on the afternoon of the second day when the track was certainly not in the ideal conditions. Now we will analyse the data collected with the aim of getting to know the new car better and finding the best set-up."