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Feeder Series Preview: Catalunya

Written by Juan Arroyo, Edited by Vyas Ponnuri

While rain has been most prevalent in the past two rounds, our junior drivers will be visiting a much sunnier Ciudad Condal next: Barcelona.

The 14 turns of the Circuit de Catalunya provide a mix of medium and high-speed corners for cars to negotiate positions with each other. The most notable change to the circuit sees the final chicane removed in favour of the old layout, allowing for a full-speed run into the final corner and onto the start-finish straight.

Be on the lookout for DRS passes into turn 1 and the back straight. This is preceded by one of the multiple 'esses' sections in the circuit's layout.

A lack of low-speed corners means drivers will have to cope with a high amount of turbulent air from cars ahead. Coupled with the heat regularly present in Catalunya, it means tyre conservation will be a key factor heading into the race weekend.

Formula 2

Frederik Vesti took a commanding lead in the championship at Monaco, claiming pole position for the Feature Race, before walking away with the first-place trophy. It was the Mercedes junior's second win of the year.

Meanwhile, Red Bull junior Ayumu Iwasa took another Sprint Race trophy home, putting himself third in the standings.

Théo Pourchaire lifted himself out of the torrid Sprint form with a strong points finish on Saturday. The ART driver followed that up with a podium finish in the Feature. Although it wasn't enough to maintain the top spot in the standings, it's a step towards the form he requires to achieve the title this year.

One rookie in form is Kush Maini, currently fourth in the standings. It's been a marked improvement from his previous year in Formula 3. Campos will be enjoying his form to open the season. Having taken a sole podium finish at Albert Park, he will be looking to add to this result at his team’s home race.

Roman Stanek enjoyed a comeback to P7 from dead last in the Feature Race, marking his second points finish of the year. On the other hand, the star of Baku, Oliver Bearman endured a difficult weekend with no points, as did Arthur Leclerc. Jack Doohan's struggles continued, as he languishes down in 13th, in the standings.

Credit: Rudy Carezzevoli - Formula 1/Formula Motorsport Limited via Getty Images

Formula 3

Gabriel Bortoleto still comfortably leads the standings, but it was Gabriele Minì who dominated qualifying in Monaco, taking pole position by a massive 0.602s ahead of Dino Beganovic in Group B.

Pepe Martí kicked off the weekend's races, winning the Sprint Race in similar fashion to Bahrain. Eight seconds separated him from second-placed Leonardo Fornaroli. He was followed by Grégoire Saucy, who had his worst weekend yet but managed to narrowly retain third spot in the standings.

Minì led every lap of the Feature Race on his way to victory, with Dino Beganovic closely following in the final stages. Mercedes junior Paul Aron completed the top three, securing his best finish of the year so far.

Trident driver and championship leader Bortoleto showed solid form over the weekend, although it wasn't his strongest performance in terms of results. The narrow streets of Monaco proved challenging for climbing positions, but he did make some decent progress through the field in the Feature Race.

One highly touted Argentinian for the championship before the first round was Franco Colapinto. So far, he has not managed to gain the necessary traction, with only a single podium to his name in all three rounds. F4 Spain champion Nikola Tsolov has also had a quiet start to the season.

Credit: Rudy Carezzevoli - Formula 1/Formula Motorsport Limited via Getty Images

This weekend's races at Catalunya become even more significant, as title contenders gear up for a serious challenge. Managing the tires and navigating the tricky circuit's turns will be crucial, especially with the added challenge of the scorching heat. Qualifying takes extra importance on this track on which overtaking tends to be difficult. The championship battle certainly heats up in the vibrant city of Barcelona.


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