Pedro Piquet seals 2019 FIA Formula 3 seat with Trident

GP3 Series race winner Pedro Piquet, son of triple Formula 1 champion Nelson, will stay with Trident Motorsport for the FIA Formula 3 Championship in 2019

Pedro Piquet seals 2019 FIA Formula 3 seat with Trident

After joining Trident last following two seasons in European Formula 3, Pedro Piquet took two wins and four podiums in his maiden GP3 season in 2018.

He finished sixth in the championship, just behind team-mate David Beckmann, in a season his father said had turned Pedro "from a kid into a man".

The 20-year-old sticks with the team in the new championship formed from a merger between GP3 and European F3.

Piquet drove the series' new car - which shares many parts with the old GP3 car - at its first shakedown with teams on February 20 at Magny-Cours.

"I am really motivated for the season ahead," said Piquet.

"I experienced a great 2018 season with them, scoring two wins and several podium finishes.

"For 2019 I am sure that we have everything we need to do even better and challenge for the title."

Trident team boss, and 2006 European and Italian Formula 3000 champion, Giacomo Ricci added: "He will be part of an extremely competitive line-up that has the potential to write a new chapter of our successful history in this championship."

Alongside Piquet and the already-confirmed Niko Kari, Devlin DeFrancesco has joined Trident to complete its line-up.

Canadian driver DeFrancesco joined GP3 with MP Motorsport last year, but failed to score any points with the squad from the 12 races he contested.

He did test for Trident in the Abu Dhabi post-season GP3 test, and at the February 20 shakedown alongside Piquet.

"The new car feels quite a bit different to last year," said DeFrancesco.

"We learned a fair few things at the shakedown and I look forward to making more progress at the official test at Paul Ricard.

"It's going to be a hard year, it's such a competitive field, but I'm ready to bounce back from a difficult '18."

In other driver news, Chinese driver Yifei Ye has joined Juri Vips and Leo Pulcini at Hitech GP.

Ye, the runner up in this year's Asian F3 Winter Series, previously competed in the Formula Renault Eurocup and finished third in the championship last year.

He completes Hitech's F3 line-up.

The first official test for FIA Formula 3 is at Paul Ricard on March 20-21.

Only four seats remain on the grid for 2019. MP Motorsport has all three of its places available, while Jenzer Motorsport has one seat.

Jenzer and Hitech both ran just two drivers at the shakedown test on February 20.

MP fielded Richard Verschoor - who is testing MP's Formula 2 car this week - and former Campos GP3 driver Simo Laaksonen in that test, but neither have been confirmed in the teams' F3 line-ups.

2019 FIA Formula 3 line-up so far

ART Grand Prix: David Beckmann, Max Fewtrell, Christian Lundgaard
Campos Racing: Alex Peroni, Alessio Deledda, Sebastian Fernandez
Carlin: Felipe Drugovic, Logan Sargeant, Teppei Natori
Charouz: Fabio Scherer, Lirim Zendeli, Raoul Hyman
Hitech GP: Juri Vips, Leonardo Pulcini, Yifei Ye
HWA: Bent Viscaal, Keyvan Andreas, Jake Hughes
Jenzer Motorsport: Artem Petrov, Yuki Tsunoda, TBC
MP Motorsport: TBC
Prema Racing: Marcus Armstrong, Jehan Daruvala, Robert Shwartzman
Trident: Niko Kari, Pedro Piquet, Devlin De Francesco.

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