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F2 debuts new 2024 car at shakedown in Barcelona

Find out how the new Formula 2 car's first test with all the teams went

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The 2024 Formula 2 car has gone through its first time on track with the drivers and is ready for pre-season testing.

Formula 2
Formula 2 cars in the pitlane for the new car shakedown in Barcelona (Image Credit: Formula 2)

First revealed back in August, the 2024 Formula 2 car aims to bridge the gap between Formula 2 and Formula 1 cars a little bit more.

Yesterday, each team was given one car to participate in the shakedown at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. A total of 3018kms of running was completed throughout the day.

FIA Formula 2 Technical Director Pierre-Alan Michot had this to say on the experience: “The purpose of this shakedown was for the teams to understand how the new car operates, to make sure that all systems are working fine together and to understand how everything behaves. We are quite happy with the running achieved today. The teams have been able to complete a lot of mileage which is a good first step.

“The first milestone was reached with all the cars hitting the track this morning when the lights turned green. It was important to see them straight out of the box, it was quite an emotional moment. And the second positive step was having them all return to the pits without any issue. There have been no red flags, which means that all cars have performed as expected while the teams are learning how to work with this new machine.

“There are still a few little things to adjust ahead of the first official test session, but that’s normal. With eleven teams, there are eleven different ways of working. This enables us to learn even more about this car. We could already correct a few things for the afternoon session, but there are still some adjustments to make before the first race of the season, but we’re not far from what we need.”

After this successful shakedown, the next step is for teams to complete pre-season testing next month.

“What we really want to be sure of is that all of the systems are working, and all of the teams are able to understand the new car in terms of systems, software and electronics,” Michot also commented. “Then you also have the setups, adjustments and mechanical changes you can make, but that will mainly come during testing in Bahrain.

Driver review

In total, 20 drivers on the 2024 Formula 2 grid were able to get a taste of the new car at the shakedown. One of those drivers, newly confirmed to be staying at ART Grand Prix, was Victor Martins.

Martins Formula 2
Victor Martins in the garage during the Formula 2 Shakedown at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya (Image Credit: Eric Alonso – Getty Images)

Martins seemed pleased with the running he was able to do, commenting: “The first goal of this shakedown was to have a clean session with no issues, and that’s what we achieved. We had a good run plan to get a first feeling of how the car is handling in corners and how it behaves.

“It was so nice to get back behind the wheel! The first feeling of the car is that it does not change a lot compared to last year’s, so I will be able to put my experience to good use for the new season.

“Everything went fine with no reliability issues. It’s a very positive start.”

Martins emphasised the importance of getting a clean run and not crashing the brand new car in a test meant to ensure that everything is working properly. But he also admitted that he felt confident enough to push his pace a little.

“Today was also about checking the aerodynamics because that’s the biggest change compared to the previous car,” he said. “And to start working on set-up that will be relevant for when we go to Bahrain. We also checked that everything is working properly on the car.

“Of course, the goal is to go step-by-step, not damage the car and make the most out of the track time to develop and test different things, but I pushed also! I like it when straight away, you can push, you get the confidence. Honestly, I’m happy. It’s the first morning of the new season and it went well. I brought the car to the limit at some point, and I could feel I have a good car under me.

“We are in a good position ahead of pre-season testing. We have data to analyse, we will go further in our development. We will keep working with the team. I’m ready!”

Drivers will get their next taste of the new car on February 11th when three days of pre-season testing kick off in Bahrain. Full specifications of the car can be found here.

Feature Image Credit: Eric Alonso – Getty Images

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