Paraguayan driver Joshua Duerksen will make the step up to FIA Formula 2 with PHM Racing next season, the team have announced.

The 20-year-old joins off the back of his second campaign in the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine, earning one podium this season in Spa-Francorchamps.

“I am very excited to announce that I will be stepping up to FIA F2 with PHM Racing!” Duerksen said. “It's a big step in my career, and I can't wait to start this new and great challenge! It's a huge honour and privilege to be the first Paraguayan driver in history to represent my country in FIA F2.

“I am more than grateful to God, my family, my sponsors, my fans, and of course, PHM Racing for believing in me. Now, I am focused on preparing in the best possible way with PHM for the season. The new car and new circuits will make this year a challenging and exciting one. Let's go all in!”

Duerksen made his single-seater debut in 2019, finishing second in the Formula 4 UAE Championship. That same year he completed a dual campaign in both Italian and German F4, where he finished eighth and 11th in the Standings respectively. In 2020, he made a return to the German Championship, achieving two wins and a further four podiums to improve to sixth overall.

Another Italian F4 campaign would follow the next year as he secured sixth in the Standings, with two wins and a podium, before graduating to FRECA in 2022 where he finished his rookie season in 14th.

In the meantime, Duerksen has been keeping his driving skills sharp, participating in the Formula 3 post-season test in Imola last month and getting 85 laps on the board for the German team.

Roland Rehfeld, PHM Racing Sporting Director, added: “Herzlich Willkommen Joshua! We are very happy to announce with Joshua Duerksen our first driver for next year's FIA Formula 2 season. Joshua is coming straight from FRECA into F2. We all know that this is a massive step to manage for him and also for the Team. Joshua convinced us with his ‘hands on’ attitude, working ethic and 100% dedication to his profession, which is essential to develop himself with the Team at the highest stage of Formula Racing below F1.

“Joshua has more potential as he was able to show in 2023, but through Formula 4 and Formula Regional Europe and Middle East he delivered already great performances and results. I guess a whole country will support him as being the first Paraguayan Driver, who is competing at this level. He in particular and all his supporters and partners deserve this chance and we will prepare him as best as possible to be competitive from the beginning on. Vamos Flaco…and see you in Yas Marina for the Post-Season Testing.”