Oliver Bearman ready to race for Ferrari at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

Oliver Bearman to race for Ferrari in Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

Earlier in the week Carlos Sainz had reported feeling unwell and subsequently missed his media duties on Wednesday. Although he completed Thursday’s on-track free practice sessions, Sainz was still unable to push the car as he would’ve liked.

Fast forward to Friday morning and news broke of an appendicitis diagnosis for the Spaniard. The resulting surgery has ruled him out of the remainder of the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix weekend.

As Ferrari reserve driver, Oliver Bearman has stepped in to drive in the absence of Sainz. Bearman was due to start Saturday’s Formula 2 feature race from pole position, but regulatory restrictions forbid an F2 driver from competing in F1 on the same weekend. As a result, his entry was regrettably withdrawn, but an F1 opportunity – especially with the Scuderia – is not to be missed.



This won’t be the first time the 18-year-old will drive one of the scarlet cars, having completed several private tests as well as two impressive FP1 appearances with Haas at the 2023 Mexican and Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Bearman will have to draw on all of his experience to get up to speed quickly, with a single practice session (FP3) separating him from his first-ever F1 qualifying session.


A team statement was released by Ferrari on the morning of 8 March:

“Carlos Sainz has been diagnosed with appendicitis and will require surgery. As from FP3 and for the rest of this weekend, he will be replaced by reserve driver Oliver Bearman. Oliver will therefore take no further part in this round of the F2 Championship.

“The Ferrari family wishes Carlos a speedy recovery.”


READ MORE: a pivotal year for Oliver Bearman