British F3 is back!

23 March 2016

Pictured BRDC British Formula 3.

MSV is pleased to confirm that the BRDC Formula 4 Championship is to become the BRDC British Formula 3 Championship with immediate effect.

Since its formation just three years ago, BRDC F4 has forged a reputation as the UK’s leading single-seater championship, with consistently strong grids and an emphasis on equality and affordability. BRDC F4 has also attracted a significant number of highly talented drivers, and its past two champions, George Russell and Will Palmer, have both received the McLaren Autosport BRDC Award, the world’s most prestigious prize for young aspiring F1 drivers.

For 2016 a new car has been introduced which has elevated the performance levels of the championship to close to F3 levels. The FA-016 Tatuus-Cosworth is a significantly more powerful and sophisticated car than the previous Ralph Firman-designed machine, with a 230bhp-spec engine, upgraded brakes and substantially more downforce from the front and rear wings and a rear diffuser. The FA-016 meets all the latest FIA Formula 3 safety criteria including side impact, front and rear carbon impact structures, wheel tethers and extractable seat. Impressively, during winter testing the car has lapped to within one second of F3 lap record pace on UK circuits.

The new car had already enticed leading Formula 3 teams Carlin, Fortec Motorsports and Double R Racing to join the established frontrunners such as HHC and Lanan, and attracted highly regarded upcoming drivers such as 2015 MSA Formula Champion Lando Norris. The change of name cements the championship’s position as the logical progression for drivers wishing to move up from the numerous national FIA F4 series, and as a feeder to FIA European F3.

The British Racing Drivers’ Club will continue to lend its support and play an active role in the championship, which will run alongside British GT for seven of its eight rounds in 2016, effectively restoring the traditional F3/GT package that ran successfully on UK circuits for so many years.

As a National F3 Championship, BRDC British Formula 3 will also offer FIA Super Licence points for the top five drivers in the overall standings.

Jonathan Palmer, Chief Executive of BRDC British F3 promoter MSV, said: “I am delighted that we have successfully worked with the FIA and MSA to streamline British single seater motorsport and establish a clear and logical hierarchy for both drivers and teams. Our much advanced 2016 BRDC F4 Tatuus Cosworth car has proved an outstanding success, being very close to the performance of British F3 in its heyday - but at less than half the budget. Cost effectiveness and value for money is critical to any championship’s health, and having set standards with our BRDC F4 Championship we are now doing the same at F3 level with the BRDC British F3 Championship.”

The first round of the 2016 BRDC British Formula 3 Championship gets underway at Snetterton this weekend (27/28 March) with an entry list comprising more than 20 cars.