Palou gets first season in European F3 with Hitech GP for 2018

Versatile single-seater ace Alex Palou is to get his first season in the Formula 3 European Championship this year

Palou gets first season in European F3 with Hitech GP for 2018

The 20-year-old Catalan will line up with Hitech GP after an extensive testing programme before Christmas with the Silverstone-based squad's Dallara-Mercedes equipment.

Palou had his first full campaign in an FIA-spec F3 car last year, taking the Drago Corse-run Tomei/ThreeBond engine project to third position in the Japanese championship.

He was also a race winner during his three end-of-season outings in Formula V8 3.5, scored points during his brace of Formula 2 cameos, and starred by setting the fastest rookie time in December's Super Formula test at Suzuka.

For Palou it represents a return to full-time European competition - he finished third in Euroformula Open in 2014, his rookie season of car racing, and scored one win during his GP3 stint in '15 and '16.

"Both the team and I are hungry to fight for the championship together," said Palou.

"The winter tests went really well and I am looking forward to racing back in Europe this year."

Hitech boss Oliver Oakes added: "Alex has consistently showed that he is an extremely young, quick and competent driver.

"His one-off appearances in Formula 2 and the rookie test in Super Formula showed he has something special."

Palou is the second driver confirmed in Hitech's 2018 squad, with reigning BRDC British F3 champion Enaam Ahmed getting the first seat before Christmas.

Ahmed's 2017 British F3 rival Ben Hingeley was also part of the Hitech testing line-up over the pre-Christmas runouts.

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