Indian car racing sensation and current F2 racer Jehan Daruvala aims for Formula 1 by 2023

India saw a car racing star once in a decade, in the 2000s it was Narayan Karthikeyan, then in the 2010s it was Karun Chandok, both reached the top of the race from Formula when they became Formula 1 drivers.

Narayan Karthikeyan became and remains the only Indian to score points in F1 when racing for Jordan in 2005. He finished fourth in the United States GP, just below the podium. He raced for Jordan in 2005, then for HRT in 2011 and 2012. He opened the ball for Indians in Formula One. Karun, on the other hand, was the second Indian to get the F1 racing seat, and he raced for Hispania in 2011 and was a reserve driver for Lotus in 2012.

Almost a decade later, Mumbai-born Jehan Daruvala became the first Indian to win an F2 race, when he won the sprint race for Carlin in the final race of the season in 2020. Jehan is a pilot for the British Carlin team. and is also a member of the RedBull Junior team, and is one of the racing talents to watch out for. The young Indian driver in his second in F2 has six podiums and two wins to his name, and he aims to reach the highest level of Formula racing by 2023.

“I would love to be in F1 and be successful there. The road is not that simple though. I hope to have another good season in F2 and I hope the seats open in 2023. Over the years the level of F2 pilots was very high “ Said Jehan, on his goal to reach Formula 1. Over the past few years the world of motorsport has shown how good F2 racers are and how they can compete at the highest level. Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc, McLaren driver Lando Norris, Haas driver Mich Schumacher, Red Bull drivers Pierre Gasly and Yuki Tsunoda are just a few names that show their worth in F1 after graduating from F2.

Jehan’s love for racing began in 2005 when he started watching Formula 1 on TV with his family. Race weekends were something he looked forward to, which led him to start karting in 2010.

“A lot of people would turn on the TV to watch cricket, I would turn on the TV to watch the races”, these words from Jehan make it clear which sport looked forward to most as a child.

“I started looking around 2005, and around that time Fernando Alonso was winning world championships with Renault, and he inspired me a lot. I was a big Alonso fan.” The two-time world champion inspired a generation of young drivers who are currently part of the racing fraternity and he left an imprint on the young Indian driver.

Jehan started Karting in 2010, and it only took him a year to make his mark in Karting. He won numerous championships in Asia and Europe under the direction of Rayomand Banajee. In 2015, Jehan switched to single-seater with Fortec Motorsport in the Formula Renault 2.0 championships. A year later he was part of the Carlin European Formula 3 Championship, where he finished sixth in the championship, outsourcing his entire squad with the exception of current McLaren driver Lando Norris.

In 2019, Daruvala took part in the first Formula 3 season of the Prema Powerteam. He won two races: the sprint race in Barcelona and the main race at Paul Ricard, France. He climbed to seven podiums and finished third in the championship, just one point behind teammate Marcus Armstrong.

In 2020 he joined the Red Bull Junior team and reunited with Carlin, but now with the F2 racing team. The Red Bull junior team has welcomed many F1 drivers like Daniel Ricciardo, Max Verstappen, Daniil Kyvat and quadruple world champion Sebastian Vettel. Jehan was part of the lot along with Japanese driver Yuki Tsunoda, who is currently an F1 driver in Red Bull’s sister team Alpha Tauri.

“Honestly it’s been great with the Red Bull team, but due to the ongoing pandemic we’ve had a lot of restrictions and haven’t been able to meet the F1 driver, but we are going to the factories to prepare. with the team “, Jehan said while being part of the Red Bull team.

“Everyone knows RedBull is a ruthless environment, as long as you know you deliver and get results they trust you. Otherwise, they can be very ruthless and let you down at any time. That’s a part of it. and an integral part of the sport, and even being part of this team is a huge achievement for me “ Jehan added, on what it feels like to be part of the Red Bull team.

Jehan’s career in F2 started slowly, but he accelerated in the second half of the season and finished third in the main Bahrain GP race, securing his first podium in F2. In the last race of the season in Sakhir, Jehan became the first Indian to win an F2 race, when he was the first to cross the checkered flag in the sprint race. He finished his first season in 12th position and reached the podium twice.

For his second season in F2, Jehan changed course on his performance. He has four podiums to his name and recently won the Sprint race at Monza, the temple of speed. With two Grands Prix remaining, he is already 24 points ahead of his record from last season and is in 7th position, and within striking distance of the top 5 of the F2 championships.

About Joseph Minton

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