Ollie Bearman Scores Points in Formula 1 Debut With Ferrari

Ollie Bearman Scores Points in Formula 1 Debut With Ferrari

BEARMANF

PREMA driver, Oliver Bearman took part in this weekend’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix and brought home six points for seventh in his first ever Formula 1 race.

Ferrari driver, Carlos Sainz was diagnosed with appendicitis on Friday morning ahead of FP3.  Subsequently, as reserve driver for the team, Bearman was called up to replace him. This withdrew him from the rest of the Formula 2 weekend where he was set to start on pole for the Feature Race.

FP3 was interrupted with a lengthy red flag to recover the Sauber of Zhou Guanyu who crashed into the barriers. This shortened the amount of time Bearman had to get used to the new car ahead of Qualifying.

However, the lack of track time didn’t seem to phase him. He was eliminated in Q2 by only 0.036 seconds to seven-time World Champion, Lewis Hamilton.

In his first Grand Prix, Bearman started 11th on the grid on the soft compound tyre, which is the quickest tyre to be on at the beginning of the race, but the compound with the shortest lifespan.

Saudi Arabia is one of the most challenging circuits on the 2024 calendar due to the high speed nature and closeness of the walls.

Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll found the wall in the opening stages of the race leading to a Safety Car period which brought the opportunity for Bearman to pit at the perfect time on Lap 8.

Once the Safety Car came into the pits and racing resumed, he quickly made his way into the points paying positions after passing the experienced Nico Hülkenburg and former F2 driver, Yuki Tsunoda.

Ahead of him, Hamilton and Lando Norris still needed to pit but they waiting until the closing stages of the race. For a few laps it looked as though the pair could challenge Bearman who was on much older tyres at this point but he managed to keep quick and consistent pace to stay ahead.

His incredible debut earned him a handshake and a hug from the Mercedes pair, Hamilton and George Russell who both commented on his excellence ahead of the race.

Sainz was in the Ferrari garage throughout the race and says he aims to be back in the car for the Australian Grand Prix in two weeks time after his surgery was successful.

Formula 2 returns alongside F1 in Melbourne and Bearman is understandably expected to be a championship contender in this year’s season. The last minute call up has put him on a slight backfoot in terms of the drivers’ standings but we’re sure he would rather have experienced his first Grand Prix!

Image: Scuderia Ferrari

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