F2 champ Drugovich joins Aston Martin F1 Team
By Mat Coch
Tuesday 13th September, 2022 - 8:54am
Formula 2 champion-elect Felipe Drugovich has joined the Aston Martin Formula 1 team’s driver development programme.
Drugovich mathematically sealed the F2 title in Monza on Saturday with three races remaining in the 2022 season.
The 22-year-old had been a free agent with no affiliation to an existing team.
Asked about his future over the weekend, he confessed that a reserve driver role was the best he could realistically hope for, having rejected offers to race in IndyCar.
“Becoming a member of the AMF1 Driver Development Programme is a fantastic opportunity for me – and only adds to what has been an extremely enjoyable and successful 2022 season,” Drugovich said of his appointment at Aston Martin.
“Winning in Formula 2 has long been regarded as the best possible launchpad into a career in Formula 1, and I see my role at AMF1 as giving me all the tools to take that crucial next step.
“For me, 2023 will be a learning curve: I will be working with the F1 team, but my primary goal is to learn and develop as a driver.
“I hope that will give me an opportunity to race in Formula 1 in the future.”
The deal will see Drugovich step into the 2022 Aston Martin for the opening practice session at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in place of Lance Stroll.
He’ll then remain with the team for the post-season test at the Yas Marina circuit ahead of an extensive testing programme throughout 2023.
“Felipe has shown incredible talent, determination, and consistency to win this year’s FIA Formula 2 Championship – I particularly remember his fantastic Sprint and Feature victories at Barcelona in May, which were hugely impressive,” said Aston Martin Team Principal, Mike Krack.
“We are delighted that he is joining us as a member of our Driver Development Programme, and we look forward to welcoming him as part of our team in Abu Dhabi this November.”
Fernando Alonso will join Aston Martin next season on a two-year deal, with Stroll set to remain in the other car at the team owned by his father.
“I am hugely proud to have inaugurated the AMF1 Driver Development Programme: I am a big believer in rewarding young talent, and this is a fantastic way to help develop the next generation of racing drivers,” said Lawrence Stroll, Executive Chairman of the team.
“We have watched and admired Felipe’s path to success in Formula 2 this year, and we aim to provide him with all the skills and experience necessary to be able to take the next step in his career.
“In the fullness of time, it would be the ultimate validation if he were to become a Formula 1 driver, joining the great pantheon of Brazilian racing drivers such as Emerson Fittipaldi and Ayrton Senna.”