Sauber Motorsport has launched a new academy for junior drivers, announcing an initial intake of four racers, including a reigning Formula 4 champion and the son of a double Formula 1 champion.
Sauber, which operates the Alfa Romeo Racing Formula 1 team, will help drivers with mental and physical training, technical work, and offer simulator duties for up-and-coming racers.
In announcing the scheme on Wednesday it confirmed the first four names on its programme.
Reigning ADAC F4 champion Theo Pourchaire, Italian F4 driver Dexter Patterson – who was previously on Sauber’s Karting Team – Formula Renault Eurocup racer Petr Ptacek and Emerson Fittipaldi Jr. have joined the initiative.
Pourchaire is the most senior of the quadruplet and will step up to FIA Formula 3 this season with the ART Grand Prix squad operated by Sauber CEO Frederic Vasseur.
“Investing in young talent has always been a central part of Sauber Motorsport’s racing philosophy,” said Vasseur.
“Our Academy is just the latest project aimed at unearthing stars of the future and guiding them through their career, giving them the tools, the education and the resources needed to succeed in the world of motorsport.”
Sauber’s Sporting Director Beat Zehnder added: “I am looking forward to working with these four extremely talented drivers.
“They are all at different stages of their career but each of them has the raw skills we will need to harness to help them in their journey to Formula 1.
“Over the years, I have seen many young drivers making their debut at the top of motorsport and it is true that, the earlier you acquire these skills, the more you can profit from them in the long term.”