F1 News: Theo Pourchaire makes case for F1 seat

Jaden Diaz
6 Aug, 2023

Theo Pourchaire believes he deserves to be considered for an F1 seat next year, explaining that his situation differs from most drivers in their third season of Formula 2. The young Frenchman took the Championship lead in Spa and will surely feature in more F1 news headlines as 2023 continues.

Making his rookie appearance in Formula 2 at just seventeen, the Sauber junior was understandably perceived as someone with the potential of reaching Formula 1.

This perception was validated by his impressive debut season, finishing in a very encouraging P5 in 2021 – competing against the likes of Oscar Piastri and Zhou Guanyu.

Although Piastri secured the title in commanding fashion as a rookie, the Australian’s phenomenal speed does not automatically disqualify Pourchaire from F1 consideration.

Still, it was clear that fighting for the Championship would be necessary for the Frenchman to contend for an F1 seat – especially with Zhou Guanyu exceeding expectations at Alfa Romeo.

Felipe Drugovich’s 101-point margin of victory in 2022 somewhat diminished Pourchaire’s value in the market, thus placing additional pressure on the 19-year-old to perform this year.

Speaking after the Belgian GP, he explained why his abilities exceed the results on paper:

“Of course, it’s my third season in F2, but I’m still only 19. I’ll be 20 in August, which makes me the seventh youngest on the grid,” motorsport.nextgen-auto quotes him as saying.

“I would say it’s like I’m not really a driver in my third F2 season, I’m just young.”

“I don’t have as much experience as other drivers who have done three seasons in F2.

“This year, I feel good in the car, and I’m still improving, I’m still improving with ART Grand Prix and with Alfa Romeo F1 as reserve driver. I learned a lot from them, and that’s good.”

Pourchaire is one of many drivers with a strong case for a chance in Formula 1, especially if he can secure the Championship in F2 this season.

However, getting an opportunity in Formula 1 is often due to timing – so the Frenchman’s future could be dictated by forces beyond his control.

The only thing within the ART driver’s control are performances, which could put him in a stronger position in the market as negotiations and the F1 news cycle intensify near the end of 2023.

Author: Jaden Diaz-Ndisang