Alfa Romeo launches its own junior driver programme

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F1 Grand Prix, GP France, Circuit Paul Ricardfr

The Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN team has officially unveiled its plans for a new driver development programme, the Sauber Academy that will commence its operation with four young drivers in 2020.

Sauber Motorsport which operates the Alfa Romeo Racing outfit in the Formula One World Championship has launched a new programme, termed as Sauber Academy, that is set to work with four young drivers in 2020. The newly-introduced young driver programme will operate alongside the Sauber Karting Team with the two programmes representing a full development pathway.

In its inaugural year, the programme will include F4 Germany champion Théo Pourchaire, Sauber Karting Team graduate Dexter Patterson, Formula Renault Eurocup racer Petr Ptacek and karter Emerson Fittipaldi Junior who will have access to Sauber’s expertise and know-how and take part in a tailor-made development programme to complement their 2020 racing activities.
The Academy will incorporate a broad programme including mental and physical training, technical work with the team’s engineers, media training and work on the simulator.

Team Principal Frederic Vasseur said: “Investing in young talent has always been a central part of Sauber Motorsport’s racing philosophy. Our Academy is just the latest project aimed at unearthing stars of the future and guiding them through their career, giving them the tools, the education and the resources needed to succeed in the world of motorsport.”

Sporting director of Sauber Motorsport AG, Beat Zehnder said that the most interesting task will be to work with four young drivers who find themselves at different stages of their motorsport career.

“I am looking forward to working with these four extremely talented drivers. They are all at different stages of their career but each of them has the raw skills we will need to harness to help them in their journey to Formula One. Over the years, I have seen many young drivers making their debut at the top of motorsport and it is true that, the earlier you acquire these skills, the more you can profit from them in the long term.”