Trident’s confidence ahead of the 2024 FIA Formula 2 season is on the up after a strong three days of pre-season testing at the Bahrain International Circuit.

The Italian team, like its rivals, were putting the all-new F2 machinery through its paces, keen to learn as much as they could about the car ahead of round one later this month at the same venue.

It is an experience Trident appeared to enjoy with Team Manager Giacomo Ricci revealing that both their drivers Roman Stanek and Richard Verschoor were feeling very happy and excited about the car.

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Trident opted to place their attentions on their long run performance for the majority of testing, looking to establish their set-up for the races rather than focusing on setting the timesheets alight with fast laps.

This is shown by the drivers’ lap count as between the pair they completed 222 trips around the Sakhir venue.

Neither Stanek nor Verschoor wound up in the top-10 in any of the opening two sessions on the first couple of days. However, the former did place fourth in the final morning segment, while the latter was seventh in the afternoon.

All in all, it was a strong few days for Trident and they return to their factory with plenty of data to analyse ahead of the opening weekend of the year.

Trident enjoyed a good three days of pre-season testing with the new Formula 2 car
Trident enjoyed a good three days of pre-season testing with the new Formula 2 car

“I have to say with the new car we are testing a lot of things,” said Ricci. “We have been focusing on our performance, long runs, then we went back to performance and then again looked our long runs.”

It is a good start to a year in which Trident will be hoping to make further progress up the Formula 2 Championship ladder after placing 10th in the Standings in 2023 with 43 points.

That followed a strong 2022 campaign where they finished ninth in the Championship with 108 points – breaking the 100-point barrier for the first time in their F2 history.

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But even with the positive feeling in the camp, Trident will not know where they stand compared to their rivals. Testing is often clouded with unknowns as to what each team is doing in regards to fuel loads and run plans.

“Still very, very early days,” explained Ricci. “The engineers will have plenty to analyse after this test, the same after the shakedown and we will see in 15 days where exactly we are going to be.”

In Verschoor and Stanek, Trident possess one of the most experienced line-ups on the grid, with the former returning for his fourth season in the Championship, while the latter enters his second campaign in the category.

Stanek returns for a second season in Formula 2 with Trident
Stanek returns for a second season in Formula 2 with Trident

Verschoor previously raced for the Italian team in F2 back in 2022 and scored their first ever victory in the competition at the season-opening Bahrain Sprint Race.

He returns for a second go round with the squad as does Stanek, who raced for Trident last season and finished 18th in the Standings.

The team will be hopeful that he continues the growth that he showed in Monza where he scored points in both races and that a solid winter, where he knows exactly what is needed from him in Formula 2, would have helped him grow.

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From the looks of his pace during pre-season testing that might appear to be the case and that could be just what Trident need to climb up the Championship order.

Ricci says the drivers felt confident in the car over the course of the three days, believing that there is plenty of potential in the new machinery.

“They are excited about the new car,” said Ricci. “They see the potential, the performance of the new package, so they are really happy. The car of course looks great, it's very close to a Formula 1 car, so all happy and confident.”