Anthoine Hubert: Remembering the last GP3 Champion

TOPSHOT - This picture taken on September 1, 2019 shows the portrait of BWT Arden's French driver Anthoine Hubert covered with condolence messages at the entrance of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Spa, Belgium. - French driver Anthoine Hubert, 22, was killed on August 31 in Spa in an accident during a Formula 2 race held on the sidelines of the F1 Grand Prix, according to organizers of the race. (Photo by Kenzo TRIBOUILLARD / AFP) (Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP via Getty Images)

For eight years, the GP3 Championship was the way drivers could show their talents. In 2018, the last champion was crowned – Anthoine Hubert.

From 2010 to 2018, the FIA held the GP3 Championship which was designed as a way for young drivers to showcase their talents. That final season saw Frenchman Anthoine Hubert win the last GP3 title as well as helping ART Grand Prix take the Team Championship.

Notable GP3 alumni include Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg, Charles Leclerc, and Valtteri Bottas. However, in 2018 the series would be merged with the Formula 3 European Championship to create the current FIA Formula 3 Championship.

The 2018 season

In 2016 Hubert participated in the post-season test and was later announced by ART Grand Prix as one of their drivers for the 2017 season. Hubert would be one of four drivers alongside eventual champion George Russell, Jack Aitken, and Nirei Fukuzumi.

Hubert would finish fourth in the 2017 championship taking four podiums. His performances saw him retain his seat for the 2018 season. Racing once again for ART but this time alongside Nikita Mazepin, Callum Ilott, and Jake Hughes. Despite only winning twice, Hubert’s consistency was key in his Championship run. A further nine podiums saw him claim the title by sixteen points over Mazepin and Ilott in third.

Later on that year, Hubert signed with the Alpine Academy (known then as Renault). In 2019, he graduated to Formula 2 driving for BWT Arden teaming up alongside fellow GP3 contender Tatiana Calderon. Despite the team underperforming, finishing eighth in the championship, Hubert would consistently outperform both the car and his teammate – taking victories in France and Monaco.

However, Hubert would be involved in a fatal crash at the Belgian Grand Prix following a collision with Juan Manuel Correa. The race was canceled, and despite round 12 continuing on Hubert would still finish the season in tenth place. In tribute to Hubert, the FIA renamed the Formula 2 ‘Rookie of the Year’ award the ‘Anthoine Hubert’ award. The most recent recipient was 2022 rookie Logan Sargeant, who will be joining the F1 grid next season.

Featured Image Credit: KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP via Getty Images