Pre-season Formula 2 and Formula 3 tests show HWA RACELAB well-positioned ahead of season-opener

The joint Formula 2 and Formula 3 pre-season tests at Bahrain International Circuit produced promising results for HWA RACELAB. With almost three weeks until the season kicks off at the same venue, the drivers with the Affalterbach-based team set fast times, suggesting they will be a force to be reckoned with in the coming season.

  • Formula 3 drivers Hughes and Doohan set the second and third fastest times of the test
  • Formula 2 drivers Markelov and Alesi each finish in the top three in individual sessions
  • Artem Markelov: "We have made progress with the set-up of the car."
  • Giuliano Alesi: "HWA feels like a second home to me."
  • Enzo Fittipaldi: "We are heading in the right direction as we approach the start of the season."
  • Jake Hughes: "Having two quick team-mates is always a positive thing."
  • Jack Doohan: "We have created a good foundation over the past few days."
  • Thomas Strick: "If we approach every race weekend in this way, we can look forward to a successful season."

Sakhir/Bahrain, 4rd March 2020 – From Sunday to Tuesday, the Formula 2 and Formula 3 teams used the pre-season tests in Sakhir/Bahrain to prepare for the season-opener at the same venue. On the back of the successful tests, HWA RACELAB can be optimistic about the opening races on 21st and 22nd: Formula 3 drivers Jake Hughes (Great Britain) and Jack Doohan (Australia) were second and third fastest when taking into account all the times set over the course of the three days.

Jake, who presented HWA RACELAB with its maiden victory in the FIA Formula 3 Championship last year, only joined the team on Monday afternoon after his Formula E rookie test in Marrakesh. Seventh, fifth and second place showed that he will once again be challenging for a spot on the podium this season. Highly-talented newcomers Jack Doohan and Enzo Fittipaldi (Brazil) improved consistently over the course of the three days. When the teams took part in the race simulations on Tuesday, Jack was 13th and third, while Enzo finished sixth and eleventh.

HWA AG fields its own private team, BWT HWA RACELAB, in the FIA Formula 2 Championship for the first time this season. Drivers Giuliano Alesi (France) and Artem Markelov (Russia) were faced with the challenge of new tyre sizes. This season, the Formula 2 cars are equipped with 18-inch tyres, instead of last season's 13-inch tyres. With this in mind, the duo initially focussed on collecting data for the tyre configuration. As such, they did not complete any full laps at first. However, the two drivers did demonstrate their potential speed in the race simulations, which were held later on: Artem ended two sessions in the top three, while Giuliano finished fourth and fifth.

The new Formula 2 and Formula 3 seasons kick off at Bahrain International Circuit from 20th to 22nd March. Both series hold their races on the support programme for the Formula 1 World Championship.

Quotes from the pre-season tests


Artem Markelov (25, Russia, car number 16)
"I have really enjoyed the days here with the team. We have done some very good work and made progress with the set-up of the car. There is still a lot to do, as far as the driving is concerned. Hopefully we can use free practice and qualifying on the opening race weekend to make more improvements. They were very nice tests. Hopefully the results over the course of the season will be just as good."

Giuliano Alesi (20, France, car number 17)
"The tests were very positive. We managed to consistently improve the car's performance. We soon gained insights into what impact the new tyres will have. Working with my new team is very enjoyable - HWA feels like a second home to me. I am already looking forward to the start of the season. We have worked hard. We must now do a lot of analysis and fine tuning, in order to be at our very best at the season-opener."



Enzo Fittipaldi (18, Brazil, car number 14)
"I have a very good feeling after the first tests with HWA RACELAB. We struggled a little on the first day, but stayed calm, kept working hard and improved aspects of the car that needed optimising. We took a big step in the right direction on day two, and improved again on day three. We are heading in the right direction as we approach the start of the season. I am very happy with the job the team is doing. I get on very well with Jake and Jack and am looking forward to the opening race weekend in Bahrain. We already had good race and qualifying pace here, which gives me hope for a successful start to the season. I am ready!"

Jake Hughes (25, Great Britain, car number 15)
"The tests were very positive for me and the whole team. I arrived a little late from the Formula E rookie tests in Marrakesh. The engines in the two cars are very different. However, I soon found my feet and was quick from the first lap on Monday morning. We started with the race simulations, and the pace was strong from the word go. We then picked up where we left off today. I can really be happy with fifth and second place. There are certainly a few aspects of the car that can be improved, but I am very optimistic. If we had produced the perfect lap and finished in the top ten, I would have been a little disappointed. However, the car still has a lot of potential and we are already well positioned. I am also pleased about Enzo and Jack's strong performances. Having two quick team-mates is always a positive thing. Bring on the season."

 Jack Doohan (17, Australia, car number 16)
"The tests ended very positively for me, with third place today. That is a very good position, from which to start the season. The days here have been tiring. I first had to get used to the car, because I drove various different cars over the winter. However, I found a good balance today and coped well with the tyre management. I was also able to consistently improve my qualifying pace. They may only have been tests, but I think we have laid a good foundation as a team over the past few days. I am looking forward to the opening race weekend and hoping for a successful season. I would like to thank the team for the exceptional job it has done for the past three days. Everyone has been very helpful to me."

Thomas Strick (Team Principal HWA RACELAB)
"We are very happy with the results of the three days here in Bahrain. The whole team has worked superbly, found quick solutions and, in doing so, has consistently improved the car over the course of the three days. We still have some work ahead of us, but the pace we had with both teams gives us a lot of confidence ahead of the start of the season. If we approach every race weekend in the same way as we did these tests, we can look forward to a successful season."


Results of the Tests at the Bahrain International Circuit:

FIA Formula 2

Sunday, Morning:
1. Louis Delétraz                   Charouz Racing System          1:43.583
21. Artem Markelov              BWT HWA RACELAB               ---------
22. Giuliano Alesi                  BWT HWA RACELAB               ---------                                          

Sunday, Afternoon:
1. Pedro Piquet                     Charouz Racing System          1:41.877
9. Artem Markelov                BWT HWA RACELAB                 1:42.504
20. Giuliano Alesi                  BWT HWA RACELAB                 1:43.911

Monday, Morning:
1. Nikita Mazepin                  Hitech Grand Prix                     1:43.825
3. Artem Markelov               BWT HWA RACELAB                   1:43.883
20. Giuliano Alesi                  BWT HWA RACELAB                  1:44.987

Montag, Afternoon:
1. Jehan Daruvala                 Carlin                                         1:41.260
21. Artem Markelov              BWT HWA RACELAB                    1:46.872
22. Giuliano Alesi                  BWT HWA RACELAB                    1:46.873

Tuesday, Morning:
1. Jehan Daruvala                 Carlin                                            1:43.428
2. Giuliano Alesi                    BWT HWA RACELAB                      1:43.438
4. Artem Markelov                 BWT HWA RACELAB                     1:43.682

Tuesday, Afternoon:
1. Luca Ghiotto                        Hitech Grand Prix                        1:41.252
20. Artem Markelov                BWT HWA RACELAB                     1:45.552
21. Giuliano Alesi                     BWT HWA RACELAB                     1:45.675


FIA Formula 3:

Sunday, Morning:
1. Bent Viscaal                     MP Motorsport                            1:47.146
12. Jack Doohan                   BWT HWA RACELAB                      1:48.100
20. Enzo Fittipaldi                BWT HWA RACELAB                     1:48.469                                         

Sunday, Afternoon:
1. Devlin DeFrancesco         Trident                                        1:46.844
19. Enzo Fittipaldi                HWA RACELAB                             1:48.065
20. Jack Doohan                  HWA RACELAB                             1:48.073

Monday, Morning:
1. David Schumacher           Charouz Racing System            1:47.461
19. Enzo Fittipaldi                 HWA RACELAB                           1:48.461
27. Jack Doohan                   HWA RACELAB                            1:49.135

Montag, Afternoon:
1. Liam Lawson                    Hitech Grand Prix                      1:46.365
7. Jake Hughes                    HWA RACELAB                             1:47.200
14. Enzo Fittipaldi                HWA RACELAB                             1:47.538
17. Jack Doohan                   HWA RACELAB                              1:47.781

Tuesday, Morning:
1. Niko Kari                          Charouz Racing System            1:46.606
5. Jake Hughes                    HWA RACELAB                           1:46.861
6. Enzo Fittipaldi                  HWA RACELAB                           1:46.877
13. Jack Doohan                   HWA RACELAB                            1:47.224

Tuesday, Afternoon:
1. Alexander Peroni             Campos Racing                           1:46.173
2. Jake Hughes                    HWA RACELAB                             1:46.200
3. Jack Doohan                    HWA RACELAB                              1:46.324
13. Enzo Fittipaldi                HWA RACELAB                              1:46.884


About HWA AG
HWA AG is an independent, 360° engineering specialist in the fields of automobile racing and high-performance cars. Formed in 1998 by Hans Werner Aufrecht, the company is based in Affalterbach (Germany) and employs roughly 300 highly-qualified members of staff. HWA AG offers all its products and services under the motto ENGINEERING SPEED: The company’s objective is to develop the best possible, high-quality solutions, in order to get its partners and customers to their destination quicker. The portfolio of services ranges from designing all vehicle components to assembling complete cars, together with the relevant logistics, after-sales and support services.

HWA RACELAB is HWA AG’s operations team in motorsport. It brings together experienced specialists in high-quality race engineering and the associated services, in pursuit of success on the motorsport scene. HWA RACELAB entered Formula E as a new team in the 2018/19 season, adding a future-oriented string to HWA’s wealth of racetrack expertise. HWA RACELAB has also been competing in the FIA Formula 3 Championship since 2019 and will be appearing in the FIA Formula 2 Championship from 2020. With eleven Drivers’ titles and over 180 race wins as a works team for Mercedes-AMG in the DTM, the company is one of the most successful players in international motorsport. HWA RACELAB also draws on the company’s other core areas of expertise, such as the development, assembly and running of GT cars for customer racing, as well as the assembly of Formula 3 race engines.


Annette Hörsch

Tel:           +49 (0) 7144 8717 – 215