Jack Doohan will have his first taste of F1 machinery as he prepares for his first outing in the 2021 A521 this weekend in Qatar.
Doohan joins Alpine reserve driver Oscar Piastri at the three-day test at the Losail International Circuit, home of the Qatar Grand Prix. Piastri drove last year’s race winning challenger on Wednesday and Thursday (11-12 May) in the Qatari capital adding to his first feel for the car in Austin in April.
Nineteen-year-old Dohan joined the Alpine Academy in January and has faced mixed fortunes in his maiden FIA Formula 2 Championship season so far in 2022.
He recorded pole position on his debut in Bahrain before backing that effort up with a front row grid slot in Saudi Arabia and later third position in Imola. He will be aiming to convert the promising pace into bigger points hauls when the season resumes in Barcelona next weekend.
Piastri was on reserve duties in Miami last weekend and will join the F1 team for the upcoming back-to-back events across Barcelona and Monaco after which the Melburnian will head to Austria, for the third test of his extensive private programme.
“It’s been a productive two days of testing where I’ve continued getting to grips with the A521,” said Piastri. “It was very hot across both days but that’s good for physical preparation.
“The track has largely been unused recently, so there were varying levels of grip and the conditions were quite dusty and windy throughout. It was a challenge at times, but important for me to learn about driving in different conditions. I’m looking forward to joining the F1 Team again in Barcelona and Monaco before my next private test day in June.”
“I’m super excited to drive a Formula 1 car for the first time,” added Doohan. “This is a moment that I’ve been building up to ever since I started racing karts, and I know these opportunities are extremely privileged.
“I’m very grateful to Alpine for the opportunity and I’m looking forward to giving it my best on the test day. I’ve watched behind the scenes at some private tests before and I’ve completed a lot of preparation in the loop simulator at Enstone, so I’m definitely feeling ready for this challenge. I’ll build myself up on the day, enjoy it at the same time and hopefully learn as much as possible alongside the team.”
“We’re very pleased to give Jack his first run in a Formula 1 car,” said Julian Rouse, the Alpine Academy’s Director. “Since he’s joined the programme at the start of the year, we’ve seen Jack develop and grow very quickly. He’s spent a bit of time at Enstone to prepare and he’s certainly demonstrating promising potential.
“For Oscar, this is his second private test of the year as part of his intense testing programme in the 2021-spec Formula 1 car. It’s important for Oscar to stay match fit and up to speed in this type of machinery and we’re pleased to continue supporting Oscar on his pathway. There’s more to come for him throughout the year.”