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Colapinto gets debut FP1 outing with Williams F1 team at British GP

Formula 2 racer Franco Colapinto will make his official Formula 1 practice debut for Williams at the British Grand Prix this weekend, replacing Logan Sargeant in first practice.

Williams sporting director Sven Smeets said the call-up was a “reward” for Colapinto’s promising start to his F2 rookie season.

The Argentinian 21-year-old, a member of the Williams Racing Driver Academy, currently lies fifth with MP Motorsport after taking a maiden sprint victory at Imola and runner-up finishes in the feature races at Barcelona and the Red Bull Ring.

“Franco has had a very encouraging start to his debut season in F2 and we are delighted to reward his performances over the past two years with his first FP1 session,” said Smeets. 

“We are proud of our talented group of drivers in the Williams Racing Driver Academy and it is important for us to give them the opportunity to progress and have these important chances as they move up the ladder. 

“To showcase our talent at our home race at Silverstone is a nice moment and, of course, this is going to be a great day for the Argentine F1 fans.”

Franco Colapinto, Williams Racing Academy

Photo by: Dutch Photo Agency

Colapinto stepped up to F2 after two race-winning seasons in Formula 3, peaking with fourth in the standings last season. 

He also has experience in sportscars on a CV that counts an outright European Le Mans Series victory in 2021 alongside former Williams F1 racer Nyck de Vries and Roman Rusinov at Paul Ricard. 

He has already had his first experience of F1 machinery by sampling the team’s 2023 FW45 at the Abu Dhabi young driver test.

Williams is currently weighing up options to partner Alexander Albon in 2025, with Sargeant’s future at the team uncertain. 

Having expressed a preference for a proven F1 race winner, it has held discussions with Esteban Ocon and its former driver Valtteri Bottas as Carlos Sainz continues to weigh up options that include a return to Alpine or to the Sauber squad that will become Audi in 2026. 

“I have so many emotions,” said Colapinto. 

“I am extremely delighted and it’s a very important moment in my life and my career. 

“I will be the most prepared I can; I will be doing a lot of laps in the simulator and studying the details needed to drive this year’s car. 

“I’m really looking forward to experiencing the new car after driving last year’s in Abu Dhabi. To be able to drive it at a track like Silverstone is a privilege, it is one of my favourite tracks and to drive it at the team’s home race means a lot. 

“To all the Argentine fans – I hope you enjoy FP1 as much as I’m going to! 

“It’s an important moment for our country and I’m so grateful for all the support I’ve been given. I’m going to give my all to make you proud!”

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