This weekend will see the brand new Formula Regional European Championship get underway and after a long winter Olli Caldwell is excited to finally get his 2019 season off to a start. Back with Prema Powerteam, following a successful testing programme Olli is hoping to make fast progress in the new Tatuus-Alfa Romeo F3 T-318.
Along with coming up against some new faces and taking on some new tracks, Olli’s biggest challenge in 2019 will be the step up from F4 to F3. Olli will be going from a 160 HP engine to 270 HP! It’s a significant jump with a Formula Renault Eurocup car currently sitting at around 210 HP.
Olli will also be using the new halo system with the FIA F3 classes seeing a shake-up in their regulations this year to mirror the safety regulations used in Formula One. Overall Olli will have to adapt to a faster car, with more downforce which is where his GP3 Testing over the winter at Abu Dhabi will be very useful.
The opening round of the season this weekend is at a circuit that is familiar to Olli in the shape of Paul Ricard. The French circuit holds happy memories for Olli as it was where he took his first victory in the Italian F4 Championship last year after a fantastic drive in race one.
Although repeating that result this time around would be a big ask Olli will have his teammates as good references. With Enzo Fittipaldi and Frederik Vesti also making the same jump up from Italian and ADAC F4 there will certainly be some friendly competition within the team.
As for the circuit layout, stretching to 3.6 miles long it’s lengthy straights should provide the chance for plenty of overtaking. Paul Ricard is also filled with lots of high speed corners which will be a real test to Olli on his first ever F3 race, but certainly one he is looking forward to!
Although the grid has yet to fill in big numbers there is certainly no lack of talent in the field with F4 champions present along with drivers who have come from Formula Renault or already have F3 experience. They include Vesti and Sophia Florsch who both raced in F3 last year with Raul Guzman coming from the Formula Renault Eurocup. To have a specific goal on where Olli is hoping to finish is difficult at this stage, but when the cars hit the track for the first time on Friday morning things will certainly begin to look more clear.
Olli Caldwell: “I’m super excited for this weekend. It’s our first race meeting of the year in a brand new car after a long winter break. Testing was super positive so definitely looking to replicate it for real now.”
The championship will be supporting the European Le Mans Series this weekend so it’s set to be a busy weekend of racing all of which will be available to watch live.
All three races will be streamed live on https://www.ollicaldwell.com/live with updates also going out on social media.
Free Practice 1 - 09:00 (40 mins)
Free Practice 2 - 13:35
Qualifying Practice 1 - 16:25 (15 mins)
Qualifying Practice 2 - 16:50
Race 1 - 10:50 (30mins + 1 lap)
Race 2 - 14:55
Race 3 - 09:50