Williams add two new members to their Academy

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Ahead of the 2024 Formula One season, Williams have announced Alessandro Giusti and Sara Matsui as the two newest members of their Formula 1 junior team.

Giusti , a 17-year-old Frenchman, joins the Academy following an impressive debut season in the Formula Regional European Championship, finishing sixth in the driver standings, securing three wins and four podiums in 2023.

The young Frenchman began his journey in karting, finding success in numerous national and international karting championships. He made his single-seater debut in the 2021 French Formula 4 Championship, winning two races and taking six podium finishes. His sophomore year in French F4 saw him crowned Champion, scoring 12 podiums, six pole positions and two victories in 2022, before moving on to FRECA in 2023.

Williams confirmed that Giusti will compete in the Formula Regional European Championship with ART Grand Prix in 2024.

“I’m so excited to be joining the Williams Racing Driver Academy. It really feels special to be joining such a prestigious Formula 1 team. I cannot wait to start this journey and work closely with the team on my development," added Guisti.

Sara Matsui is a 13-year-old karting star from Japan who joins the Driver Academy as a 2022 Girls on Track Rising Stars Finalist. She has competed in several national karting series, including the 2021 JAF Kart Championship FR-Jr Cadets and the 2022 JAF Kart Championship FP-Jr, both of which she finished third overall.

Matsui has continued to improve her skills throughout 2023, attending the HONDA Racing School and competing in series such as the JAF Local Kart Championship FS-125/X30 Division and the GPR Karting Junior class where she scored two podiums. Sara also impressed in the 2023 OK-N Junior Champions of the Future Academy Program, finishing eighth overall out of 24 global competitors.

In 2024, Matsui will drive in the OKJ class with Kart Republic as well as compete in the 2024 Champions of the Future Academy supported by F1 Academy.

Sara Matsui: "It's an honour to be part of the Williams Racing Driver Academy and I'm grateful for the opportunity to be working with such an historic team. I'm looking forward to building my experience in Europe and I can't wait for the season to start!"

Speaking of the two new young talents, Sven Smeets, Sporting Director, Williams Racing commented: “We’re delighted to announce Alessandro and Sara as the newest members of the Williams Racing Driver Academy.

"Alessandro has demonstrated great ability behind the wheel in both French F4 and last year in FRECA, with impressive performances in qualifying and races. Sara is one of the rising stars in karting, delivering promising results in her home country of Japan and being a 2022 Girls on Track Rising Stars Finalist. We look forward to supporting their development as they go racing in 2024 and beyond.”

Currently, the Williams Driver Academy features eight drivers: Jamie Chadwick, Zak O’Sullivan, Franco Colapinto, Luke Browning, Oleksandr Bondarev, Lia Block, Alessandro Giusti and Sara Matsui.