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Ferrari hot prospect secures F1 debut with Haas

Oliver Bearman during the Formula 3 round in Zandvoort, Netherlands on September 4, 2022. He will make his F1 debut with Haas. (Photo by Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Oliver Bearman, a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy, will make his F1 debut with Haas at the end of 2023.

Aside from occasional rumors, there has been limited movement in the F1 driver market. This is especially true for the Formula 2 field, which is unlikely to see anyone jump into Formula 1 in 2024. However, Ferrari academy driver Oliver Bearman is among those expected to factor in next year’s ‘silly season’.

The British driver is completing his first season in Formula 2, already showing exciting potential. Currently, 6th in the standings as a rookie (within striking distance of third place), Bearman is developing well.

His highlight of the year was easily in Baku, where he secured Pole Position with a broken steering wheel. Bearman went on to secure victory in both the Sprint and Feature Race. The 18-year-old’s form in 2023 has been very strong, becoming fast-established as the most promising driver in the Ferrari junior ranks.

Returning to the topic of 2024 and beyond, Bearman will have opportunities. Both Haas and Alfa Romeo drivers have expiring contracts, meaning two Ferrari customers have seats available after next season concludes.

Potential F1 Opportunities

It would be inaccurate to suggest the youngster is even close to guarantee an F1 seat. The likes of Theo Pourchaire have been expected to earn a promotion and – through a variety of factors – failed to do so.

However, Haas’s recent announcement that Bearman will take two FP1 sessions this year (Mexico and Abu Dhabi) is evidence that he is on the radar. If he can fight for the Championship next season as a 19-year-old sophomore, opportunities could quickly present themselves.

To be clear, Ferrari’s influence on the driver pairing at Haas and Alfa Romeo is not as significant as before. However, this is not to say the Maranello squad are incapable of opening doors for this promising young driver.

Moreover, if Bearman is a contender next year, these teams may not require any incentive to sign this up-and-coming talent.

Haas team principal Guenther Steiner gave his thoughts on Bearman’s FP1 outings:

“We’re very happy to offer Oliver Bearman these outings in Mexico and Abu Dhabi.

“He’s had a stellar rookie season in Formula 2, four wins is a testament to that, and as part of the Ferrari Driver Academy – we know his background preparation coming into these weekends will be first-rate.

“We look forward to welcoming Oliver into the team and having him drive the VF-23.”

One to watch in 2024

Embed from Getty Images

Oliver Bearman’s statement on this announcement has also been released:

“I am so happy to be joining MoneyGram Haas F1 Team driving in Mexico and Abu Dhabi.

“Getting to Formula 1 has been my dream since I was go-karting so to be driving a car for the first time this year is really special.

“I’m grateful to the team, and of course Ferrari, for allowing me this chance. I’m working hard to make sure I’m ready to support the team as best I can on both occasions.”

Rookie FP1 outings – as part of the F1 mandatory requirement – are brief yet valuable opportunities. Drivers like Bearman will struggle to make huge waves or F1 news headlines in just one practice session.

However, they indicate which drivers the likes of Ferrari are looking at – and who to look out for next year.


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