Vasseur: Bearman has to be focused on F2

Vasseur: Bearman has to be focused on F2

Vasseur: Bearman has to be focused on F2

Frederic Vasseur, following Oliver Bearman’s successful Formula 1 debut with Ferrari in the 2024 Saudi Arabian GP, insisted the young driver should now focus seeing out his second Formula 2 season.

Bearman is on his second season in the F1 feeder series, his first being in 2023 which he finished sixth in the standings, after only one campaign in F3 in 2022 which he concluded third in the standings.

Despite not being like other drivers that won the F2 Championship from the first time of asking – Oscar Piastri for example – Bearman impressed onlookers when he made his F1 debut last week in Jeddah replacing Carlos Sainz at Ferrari, the Spaniard undergoing surgery for appendicitis.

He had only FP3 to get ready, and only missed qualifying by a slight margin, while in the race he delivered a mature charge to finish seventh and score points, all under the pressure of driving for the most famous F1 team.

Evaluating Bearman’s Saudi performance, Vasseur said: “He was very calm in his approach from the beginning.

“This was a huge asset for the weekend because you know, you have the pressure, you are reminding him of all the points of the story, that he is the youngest [driver] for Ferrari blah blah blah, and for him, for sure it’s a huge pressure.

“But at the end of the day, I think he was able to skip it from his mind and focus on the real point and he was – I think a clear target for him, my understanding of this was that he wasn’t focused on details, but on the big topic and in the end it went well,” he explained.

“The fact he had a short weekend without FP1 and FP2, without any mistakes, honestly I was completely impressed by this in Jeddah, between the walls, skipping FP1 and FP2, directly almost into quali,” Vasseur admitted.

Bearman did a fantastic job

Speaking after the race to Sky Sports F1, the Frenchman said: “As you can imagine, when I asked Ollie to jump into the car on Friday for the quali, I didn’t expect [such] a robust weekend.

“He did very well yesterday, taking it step by step in free practice, doing a very strong quali – because he missed Q3 for a couple of thousandths.

“Today [Saturday] I was a bit scared with the procedure of the start, the pit stop and so that he didn’t do before, but he was very solid and he didn’t do a single mistake in the race, and he was even able to speed up at the end when we told him that [Lando] Norris and [Lewis] Hamilton were behind him. Overall it’s a fantastic job.

“It was amazing. On the management, I would say that pace is one thing but management, I don’t want to just speak about the race, but from the beginning of the event he was very solid, very robust, he didn’t do a mistake.

“[He gave] good feedback, very calm on the radio, and also [was] helping everybody to stay calm and thanks to him,” Vasseur summed up.

When asked if Bearman could land an F1 seat in the future, the Ferrari boss responded: “Yeah perhaps, but the most important [thing is], you know perfectly that the result of today will be behind us in a couple of weeks, and that he will have to be focused on the F2 because he has a huge challenge in front of him.

“This weekend cost him also a lot because he was supposed to start from pole in F2, it means to come back into the championship will be a challenge, but he will have the occasion to do some FP1 this year,” Vasseur concluded.

Following the Saudi GP, Bearman was back in a Ferrari – the 2022 F1-75 – around the Fiorano track as part of the team’s program of running previous year cars.