Aitken to make Formula 1 debut in Sakhir
Williams F1 Team have announced that the British-Korean driver Jack Aitken will make his Formula One debut at the Sakhir Grand Prix in Bahrain this weekend, replacing George Russell who will in turn be driving for Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team.
A dream come true for any driver and a landmark moment as he becomes the first driver of Korean heritage ever to drive in Formula One.
Jack tested the Williams FW43 in FP1 at the Styrian Grand Prix in Austria at the start of the season, will now make that next step in an actual race seat for the full weekend;
“I’m absolutely over the moon to have the opportunity to make my debut with Williams this coming weekend and I am extremely happy for George to have his chance too!” said Jack. “I really mean it when I say I’ve felt very much at home here since I joined Williams earlier this year, so to get my chance to help the team try to achieve that elusive points finish is an extremely satisfying occasion to say the least. I’ll be doing all I can to prepare in the coming days, but truthfully, I feel like I have been ready since Melbourne. I also want to wish Lewis well in his recovery, and good luck to George getting the chance to drive the Mercedes this weekend.”
For Jack, it’s the culmination of years of hard work and the talent that has led him to three junior titles and four wins in Formula 2 – as well as two podiums, eight other points finishes and a fastest lap during this season alone.
This means Jack will not be driving in the final round of the Formula 2 championship this weekend with Spanish team Campos Racing as normal.
“I’d like to thank Campos for releasing me to follow my goal of Formula One,” added Jack. “The team has put in so much hard work this year under difficult circumstances and I would like my performance in Formula One this weekend to do them proud as well. I know the Williams team and the venue well, even though we’re going to be racing on a brand new circuit layout this weekend, which will be exciting. That’s going to be entirely new for everyone, so it can only help me. I’m going to enjoy the moment today, but the hard work and focus starts right now, so that I can maximise this incredible opportunity.”
Williams Racing Acting Team Principal, Simon Roberts, said:
“We are thrilled to give another British talent in Jack Aitken the opportunity to make his Formula One race debut. Jack joined Williams at the start of this season, and despite Covid-19 restrictions meaning we haven’t been able to interact with him as much as we would like, he has quickly become a much-liked member of the team. We look forward to seeing him build on his previous experience driving the car in practice, to see what he can do in a qualifying and race situation.”
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*Image Credit:2020 Jack Aitken Media Office.