Alpine juniors Martins and Collet team up at MP Motorsport for FIA F3 debut
Alpine has placed two of its Alpine Academy drivers with MP Motorsport for their debut FIA Formula 3 season. Victor Martins and Caio Collet will team up to race a pair of F3 cars for the Dutch outfit.
In 2020, Martins and Collet proved to be the class of the field in the final season of the Formula Renault Eurocup, with Frenchman Martins taking the title and Brazilian Collet ending the year as a close runner-up to Martins. Now eager to advance to the F1-supporting FIA Formula 3 Championship, the two Alpine juniors will transform into team mates at MP Motorsport.
“It’s been a long time waiting to race in Formula 3. It’s the next step in the junior categories, so I’m looking forward to starting the season“, said reigning Formula Renault champion Martins, who previously raced for MP in the Eurocup two years ago. “Even if it’s not the same engineers or mechanics [from 2019] I still know a lot of the team. I aim to create a positive environment around me and work as much as possible with those around me like the Academy, my team and my family. It’s going to be good to race on the Formula 1 weekends. You see the cars up close and that’s really cool and it makes the ultimate goal feel even closer.”
“I’m really looking forward to this season with MP Motorsport”, said Collet. “The Formula 3 series is part of the Formula 1 weekend, so naturally it has more eyes on it and it’s going to be important to perform to your best every single weekend. It’s also a very competitive series with some of the best young drivers in the world so it’s going to be a fight from start to finish. The target, as always, is to win the championship.”
“Having Victor and Caio team up with us in FIA F3 is pure gold”, said Sander Dorsman, MP Motorsport’s team manager. “They were very hard to beat when we raced them in Formula Renault last year, and now we have them on our driving roster ourselves! I’m extremely happy that our cooperation with the Alpine Academy has led to both Victor and Caio joining us, and we will work hard to provide them with competitive cars worthy of the Alpine name. I’m sure they will prove quick straight out of the blocks.”
In 2017, Martins joined the motorsport ranks as the 2016 World Champion in OK Junior karts. Following a debut season in which he finished runner-up in French F4, he joined the Formula Renault Eurocup trail to take fifth in his first year in 2018, as a member of the Renault Sport Academy. Then the Frenchman narrowly missed out on the title in 2019, before becoming the champion in the final year of the Eurocup before its merger with the Formula Regional European Championship. After a one-year hiatus in 2020, Martins’ title ensured his return to the Alpine junior programme.
Collet came third in the 2015 KF Junior World Championship and took sixth in the 2016 OK Junior European Championship before claiming the 2018 French F4 title in his first year in motorsport. Immediately progressing to the Formula Renault Eurocup, the Brazilian took fifth in the 2019 series as the São Paulo-born driver became a member of the Renault Sport Academy that is now superseded by the Alpine Academy junior programme, before taking second in the series in 2020.