Alpine juniors Guanyu Zhou and Oscar Piastri were in action this week at Silverstone where the two F2 chargers added to their F1 experience with the Enstone squad.
Fresh from their Monaco Grand Prix weekend, where Zhou triumphed in the FIA Formula 2 Championship’s first sprint race on Friday, the two drivers each enjoyed a full day of testing behind the wheel of Renault’s 2018-sepc R.S.18.
Piastri – who was testing an F1 car for the second time in his career – took to a damp track on Tuesday and raked up 86 laps while Zhou clocked in on Wednesday with 106 laps under his belt but in dry conditions.
“It was a great experience driving a Formula 1 car again,” said the 20-year-old Aussie. “There are not many better combinations than driving an F1 car fast around Silverstone.
“It was a little bit wet in the morning, but we completed a lot of laps in the afternoon with a few qualifying and race simulations thrown in there too.
“I’ve learnt a lot from the day and it will stick in my mind for a long time. Hopefully, it’s the first of many experiences here driving an F1 car at Silverstone.”
Zhou said he had no issues transitioning from his Uni-Virtuosi F2 ride to Alpine’s F1 car.
“Yesterday was a really good day,” commented the Chinese hopeful. “It was so nice coming from Monaco to Silverstone and feeling the amazing downforce in a Formula 1 car.
“I adjusted to the car straight away even though it was my first time in an F1 car this year.
“We had some light rain at Silverstone, but it didn’t impact our plan too much and I am happy with the progress we made as a team and for me personally.”
Zhou and Piastri will now move on to the FIA F2 Championship’s third round in Baku, with the former leading the series with 68 points thanks to two wins and a podium.
But Prema Racing’s Piastri currently sits second, just 16 points behind his F2 rival.