Ferrari add Charles Leclerc’s brother to Academy

Charles Leclerc’s brother, Arthur, has joined the Ferrari Driver Academy, the team has officially announced.

The 19-year-old is one of two new drivers added to Ferrari’s young driver programme along with 15-year-old Swedish karter Dino Beganovic, who will predominantly take part in the Italian F4 series.

As part of joining Ferrari’s academy, Arthur Leclerc will be driving for Prema in the Formula 3 Regional series this year.

“I am really happy to announce that I will drive in Formula Regional with one of the best teams in junior series,” Arthur Leclerc said.

“I did my very first test in single seaters with Prema two years ago and I have always dreamed to race with them.

“This great opportunity comes with another big chance for me, as I am proud to announce that I am joining the Ferrari Driver Academy.

“I am very grateful for the support and the trust given to me. I cannot wait to be back in the racing seat.”

Team principal Angelo Rosin added: “We are absolutely looking forward to having him in our talent pool.

“In the early stages of his career he made the most out his chances to race, so we are confident about the potential for 2020 especially given how we saw him perform as a contender.

“He is an outstanding addition to the team, and our side we are determined to work as hard as we can to make the difference for our drivers.”

Arthur Leclerc will be joined in the Formula Regional series by 17-year-old Brazilian, Gianluca Petecof, who has retained his place in the Ferrari Driver Academy.

The news comes after Charles Leclerc recently secured his long-term future at Ferrari by signing a new contract with the Scuderia that expires at the end of the 2024 season.

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Hakkinen: Ferrari now have the best car in F1

Ferrari’s hat-trick of race victories on vastly different circuits prove they now have the best car on the grid, according to Mika Hakkinen.

The Scuderia are “on a roll” as Sebastian Vettel followed up Charles Leclerc’s wins at Spa and Monza with victory at the Singapore Grand Prix.

Their 1-2 finish at the Marina Bay Street Circuit was a welcome surprise for the Italian outfit as their low-drag SF90 is not really suited to the track.

While F1 motorsport boss Ross Brawn feels Mercedes still have the strongest overall package, former Formula 1 World Champion thinks Ferrari begs to differ.

“Ferrari is on a roll, and Singapore gave the final evidence that the Italian team has now got the best car in Formula 1,” he wrote in his Unibet column. “After the straight-line speed performance which we saw in Spa and Monza, Singapore was supposed to be different.

“A bumpy street circuit with lots of changes of direction and some slow speed corners, many people expected this to be a battle between Mercedes and Red Bull Racing. But Ferrari really surprised everyone, perhaps including themselves.”

He added: “This was a dominant performance by Ferrari and, although there is no doubt that their engines are now the most powerful in Formula 1, the result in Singapore shows that the entire car is working well.

“They brought further upgrades which worked, and suddenly World Championship leader Lewis Hamilton is saying that Ferrari will be difficult to beat everywhere.”

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