Sargeant "lucky" to continue on F1 junior ladder amid money worries

Newly-signed Williams Formula 1 junior Logan Sargeant says he is “lucky to still be here doing what I love” after his racing career was jeopardised by financial struggles in 2020.

Logan Sargeant, Williams Driver Academy

The Williams Academy driver, who has signed with Carlin for his debut FIA Formula 2 season in 2022, faced career uncertainty at the end of a 2020 F3 season in which he had finished third with Prema Racing.

Speaking to Autosport, Sargeant explained that he was left with “no options” heading into 2021 because of budget problems that made a move to F2 impossible and left him unable to return to Prema.

He was eventually approached by Charouz Racing System, helping the team to a fifth place finish in 2021 and finishing seventh in the drivers’ standings, taking a win at Sochi and three further podiums.

The 21-year-old American will now make the step into F2 with Carlin alongside his work in the Williams junior programme, which he joined in October on what was described as a long-term deal.

Sargeant, who made his F2 debut for HWA in a one-off appearance at Jeddah, said: “I think the way the whole 12 months has gone has really changed me as a person and a driver.

“I realise that I'm lucky to even still be here doing what I love. As you know, that looked like it was quickly fading.

“It's drastically changed my mindset, whereas now I can just really enjoy it, I can really just give it give it everything I have. And anything I get from here is just a bonus.

“Carlin's obviously extremely strong in Formula 2, it’s a great opportunity to go out and do a good job and hopefully put myself in a position to move into Formula 1 in the next couple years to come.”

Sargeant also raced sportscars in 2021, making select European Le Mans Series and Le Mans Cup appearances alongside his F3 duties, having anticipated that he wouldn't be able to continue with single-seaters in 2022.

Sargeant raced an ORECA LMP2 for TF Sport's European Le Mans Series team last season

Sargeant raced an ORECA LMP2 for TF Sport's European Le Mans Series team last season

Photo by: Paolo Belletti

Reflecting on the season, Sargeant said the off-season going into 2021 was “probably one of the toughest moments of my career”.

He explained: “It wasn't easy at the start. I remember coming out of 2020, which was arguably my best season yet, I really had no options.

“I didn't have the budget to move up to Formula 2, I didn't have the budget to go back to F3 and go for the title.

“We really just took what came in our direction, and that was really the saving grace of the year, to be honest. So I'm really grateful for that opportunity.”

Formula 2 returns in support of the Formula 1 season opening Bahrain Grand Prix from 18-20 March.

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