Riki Christodoulou has finally been able to confirm his racing plans for 2009, announcing a assault on the Cooper Tires British F3 International Series with Fortec Motorsport.
The 20-year old, who graduates from Formula Renault UK after two seasons, had tested both F3 and World Series by Renault machinery over the winter, but has now confirmed that he will race the Dallara-Mercedes he took to the top of the timesheets in the first official F3 test of the pre-season at Snetterton, remaining with the Fortec team that ran him in FRenault.
“It's an established breeding ground for up-and-coming Formula One drivers,” he said of his decision, “The racing is close and the cars are 'mini' grand prix cars in many respects, with the F1 teams monitoring this category closely.
“My aim is to win the F3 championship title at my first attempt – I know I have the ability, the passion, the hunger and importantly, the tools to do the job – it's down to me whether I succeed. Fortec is a top quality team who are themselves determined to win the F3 title for the first time, while I believe the Dallara chassis and Mercedes engine combination is the best.”
'Christo' has consistently set top three times in official pre-season testing, while posting respectable marks in the more powerful World Series car on his limited outings there, but has earmarked ten events for 2009, including the seven UK-based double-header rounds and three overseas - in Belgium, Germany and Portugal.
“I've tested an F3 car on about ten occasions now but, since the FRenault UK season finished last October, I've spent the winter months considering all options - including the World Series by Renault category as well as F3," he acknowledged, “It's taken a long time to confirm our 2009 plans, but now I can get my head down and focus on the opening races of the season – I can't wait to make my F3 debut.”