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Mercedes’ Rising Star: Andrea Kimi Antonelli Impresses with ‘Metronomic’ Pace in F1 Testing

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Mercedes shares details on Kimi Antonelli's consistent performance in F1 trials

James Allison remarks that Mercedes protégé Andrea Kimi Antonelli displayed "great potential" during his initial F1 testing sessions.

Mercedes technical director James Allison has described Andrea Kimi Antonelli as an extremely promising talent, highlighting his consistent speed during his F1 trial runs.

Mercedes' rising star Antonelli is being hailed as a potential future F1 driver and is considered the top pick to fill the seat left by Lewis Hamilton, who is set to join Ferrari in 2025. This comes despite Antonelli's young age of 17 and the fact that he is only in his debut season in Formula 2 this year.

The well-regarded Italian driver recently finished a set of Formula 1 trials with Mercedes, taking the wheel of their 2021 and 2022 models at the Red Bull Ring in Austria and Imola in Italy towards the end of April.

Mercedes recently disclosed their thoughts on Antonelli's performance, with Allison commenting that the team was impressed by Antonelli's rapid adaptation to the Formula 1 equipment.

"Allison expressed immense joy in hearing fellow engineers share their experiences of engaging with him during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix."

"A youthful and eager racer, incredibly speedy. Remarkably consistent in his speed, he had not driven an F1 vehicle until a short while ago, yet quickly adapted, appearing as though he’d been racing one for years after just a couple of laps."

He approached this era of ground effect vehicles without any preconceptions. Despite experiencing everything one would anticipate, his perceptions remain unaffected by past models.

"He simply accepts the conditions as they come, sharing his insights on their flaws and merits, and allows the engineers to focus on enhancing those aspects. He appears to be a highly promising young racer."

Antonelli has experienced a rapid ascent through the ranks of single-seater racing since he first started car racing in 2021.

Following his victory in the previous year's Formula Regional European Championship, he quickly ascended to F2 with Prema, skipping the customary intermediate step of Formula 3.

Mercedes has not yet determined who will take over from the departing Hamilton and team up with George Russell.

Following Hamilton's switch, Carlos Sainz finds himself without a team to race for. However, the more seasoned Sainz is perceived as having a higher chance of joining Sauber/Audi, which is considered a more probable route for the Spanish racer.

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