Mercedes junior Vesti to run in FP1 in Abu Dhabi

© XPB 

Mercedes junior Frederik Vesti will be back behind wheel of the Brackley squad’s W14 in FP1 in Abu Dhabi, following up on his outing at last month’s Mexican Grand Prix.

The 21-year-old Dane, who is currently second in the FIA Formula 2 Championship and still in contention for the title with one round to go, will also enjoy a full day’s running with Mercedes in next week’s end-of-season F1 test at Yas Marina.

In Mexico, Vesti replaced George Russell in FP1, so he will therefore take over Lewis Hamilton’s W14 car on Friday.

"Driving in FP1 in Abu Dhabi is another step in my career,” said Vesti who has been a member of Mercedes’ junior team since2021.

“Getting my first experience of an official session on an F1 weekend in Mexico was a big moment. I learnt so much, and it was great being able to support the team and work with Lewis and George.

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“I'm looking forward to building on that experience at Yas Marina. It's a track I know well and that will no doubt make it easier to get up to speed in the one hour of practice.

“I'm extremely excited to get back behind-the-wheel of the W14 for FP1 and then the post-season test. Once again, I want to say a big thank you to the team for giving me this opportunity."

Andrew Shovlin, Trackside Engineering Director, commented: "Fred acquitted himself well during his first FP1 session in Mexico City, running through the programme smoothly and helping us begin the weekend in a positive manner.

“We look forward to having him back in the car for Abu Dhabi. It will be a busy weekend for Fred, given his F2 commitments.

“He has shown he has the maturity and confidence to handle this though, and I am sure he will get the most out of it across the weekend.”

Sauber junior and ART Grand Prix’s Thomas Pourchaire currently leads the F2 championship with 191 points, 25 points clear of Prema’s Vesti who has claimed five wins in the series year-to-date.

Behind the top two, DAMS’ Ayumu Iwasa is the third and final candidate in contention for the title.

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