DAMS Racing announced earlier today that 2022 rookie Ayumu Iwasa will be retaining his seat. He’ll partner alongside rookie Arthur Leclerc.
Japanese driver Ayumu Iwasa will be retaining his seat at DAMS after finishing fifth in the standings taking two wins and six podiums. With Iwasa’s announcement, DAMS have now completed their lineup for the 2023 Formula 2 season with Formula 3 driver Arthur Leclerc taking the second seat. Iwasa is the twelfth driver to be announced for next season. Iwasa has been a member of the Red Bull Junior Team and is likely to be one of several members racing on the F2 grid next year.
F2 Rookie Season
Iwasa made his Formula 2 debut in March after finishing twelfth in the 2021 Formula 3 Championship. He participated in the 2021 Formula 2 post-season test and was later announced as a driver for DAMS alongside veteran Roy Nissany. Iwasa had a poor start to his campaign, as he was unable to finish his qualifying lap in Bahrain. With Iwasa starting at the back for both races, he managed to storm his way to the points during the Sprint Race finishing 8th.
A string of technical and strategic errors found Iwasa struggling for points during the first few rounds. He was able to turn his season around at the Spanish Grand Prix securing his maiden F2 podium. After two second-place finishes, Iwasa took his first Formula 2 win at the French Grand Prix followed by another podium in the next round.
In the season finale at Abu Dhabi, to everyone’s surprise, DAMS secured a front-row lockout with Iwasa leading Nissany. Iwasa was able to hold off from the charging, newly crowned champion Felipe Drugovich to claim his second win of the season.
While Iwasa was victorious, Nissany tumbled down the order finishing in tenth. A metaphorical end to how the pair’s campaigns went with Nissany ending the season 19th with no podiums or wins.
🚨 Ayumu Iwasa is sticking with @damsracing!
— Formula 2 (@Formula2) December 12, 2022
Following the announcement, Iwasa stated:
“I’m really happy with my first F2 season, I learned a lot during the year, and we were able to improve at each race. It’s a great feeling to continue with DAMS for another year, I feel at home in the team, and we work well together.”
Charles Pic (Team Owner of DAMS) added:
“We were all impressed with Ayumu’s performances in 2022, especially with the victories at Paul Ricard and Yas Marina, so we were very keen to keep him for 2023. It’s great for us to continue our relationships with Red Bull and Honda, they trust in our methods, and we’ll do our best to succeed together.”
2023 Driver Lineup:
- Campos Racing: Ralph Boschung & Kush Maini
- DAMS Racing: Arthur Leclerc & Ayumu Iwasa
- MP Motorsport: Dennis Hauger & TBD
- PHM Racing by Charouz: Roy Nissany and Brad Benavides
- PREMA Powerteam: Oliver Bearman & Frederick Vesti
- Trident Racing: Clement Novalak & TBD
- Virtuosi Racing: Jack Doohan & Amaury Cordeel