The Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine is back: 33 drivers ready for Hockenheim

With 11 leading teams and a grid of 33 cars the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine is ready to be back on the track the upcoming weekend, for the opening round at Hockenheim. The Championship promoted by ACI Sport and Alpine Racing, chosen every year by many high-profile drivers as a fundamental step in a succesful carreer, will involve also this year a quality driver pool, with many of them backed by various academies. Among the prominent figures is Rafael Camara, entering his second season with Prema Racing, having secured fifth place last year with victories at Spa and the Red Bull Ring. The Brazilian is one of the drivers from the Ferrari Driver Academy. However, attention is also drawn to his new teammate James Wharton. Particularly noteworthy is also the entry of Ugo Ugochukwu, the Italian-American from the McLaren Driver Development Program, reigning Euro4 Champion.

Italian Brando Badoer will be among the contenders, after having showcased his speed and driving skills during the winter tests with Van Amersfoort Racing, and being selected in the McLaren program, former F1 driver Luca Badoer’s son comes off two highly successful seasons in Italian F4 and is set to make his debut in the series. He will be joined in Rob Niessink’s Team by Brazilian Pedro Clerot and Portuguese driver Ivan Domingues. Another highly anticipated rookie is Nicola Lacorte. The Italian driver born in Pisa, recently admitted to the BWT Alpine F1 Team Academy, has joined Trident after a successful season in Italian F4, where he clinched victory in the opening round at Imola. Earlier this year, Lacorte secured a win at Hampton Downs and a second-place finish at Manfeild in the Oceanic series, in which he participated in the first three rounds. Maurizio Salvadori’s team also relies on Chinese driver Liu Ruiqi and, notably, Roman Bilinski, a British driver of Polish descent, who dominated the Formula Regional Oceania earlier this year with six wins and the championship title. High expectations also surround Valerio Rinicella, who impressed in the 2023 Spanish F4. He will be joined by Nikhil Bohra and Nikita Bedrin, the latter also concurrently engaged in FIA Formula 3.

More FDA drivers joining the field: Tuukka Taponen, is set to debut with R-Ace GP. The Finnish driver, the 2024 Middle East series champion, will flank Zachary David and Enzo Deligny. Giovanni Maschio, will be back in the Championship this weekend, joining RPM. Alongside the Italian, the Irish team will field Edgar Pierre and Danish driver Noah Strømsted, the fastest driver in tests conducted at Hockenheim at the end of April. Kic Motorsport has confirmed Costa Toparis, Vietnamese driver Hoang Dat Sawer, and Nandhavud Bhirombhakdi. Japanese driver Kanato Le makes his debut with G4 Racing, alongside Jesse Carrasquedo and Romain Andriolo. Evan Giltaire is set to compete with Art Grand Prix, which also welcomes Ukrainian Yaroslav Veselaho for his debut, while Léna Bühler returns with the Team and Alessandro Giusti joins. Sixteen-year-old Roman Matteo De Palo, Théophile Naël, and Enzo Peugeot are the drivers for Saintéloc Racing.

Making their debut in the European Regional Championship will be the Iron Dames team with Spanish driver Marta Garcia, last year’s winner of the F1 Academy title, and the revelation Doriane Pin, who entered the Mercedes-Amg F1 Junior program.

The timetable
The weekend’s schedule includes collective tests in two sessions on Friday, May 10th, starting at 11:36 and 16:29 for 50 minutes each. On Saturday, May 11th, Group A qualifying will hit the track from 11:15 to 11:30, followed by Group B from 11:35 to 11:50. Race 1 will then take place, lasting for 30 minutes + 1 lap, starting at 17:40. On Sunday, May 12th, there will be qualifying sessions again, with Group B on track from 10:15 to 10:30, followed by Group A from 10:35 to 10:50. The final race of the weekend (30 minutes + 1 lap) will start at 16:10.

Qualifying and race sessions of the weekend will be live-streamed on Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine’s youtube channel