Skip to content

Oliver Bearman: British teenager replaces Carlos Sainz at Ferrari for Saudi Grand Prix as Spaniard undergoes surgery

British 18-year-old Oliver Bearman to drive for Ferrari in Saudi Arabian Grand Prix qualifying and race; Spanish driver Carlos Sainz has undergone successful surgery for appendicitis; watch qualifying on Friday at 5pm on Sky Sports F1; Saudi Arabian GP on Saturday at 5pm

Oliver Bearman and Carlos Sainz
Image: British teenager Oliver Bearman (L) has replaced Carlos Sainz for Ferrari in Jeddah

British teenager Oliver Bearman will replace Carlos Sainz at Ferrari for this weekend's Saudi Arabian Grand Prix after the Spaniard underwent successful surgery for appendicitis.

Sainz missed his media duties on Wednesday through illness before participating in both of Thursday's practice sessions in Jeddah, but Ferrari announced ahead of Friday's final practice and qualifying that the Spaniard had been diagnosed with appendicitis.

Bearman, 18, who has been part of the Ferrari Driver Academy since 2021, made a solid debut for the Italian team by taking 10th in the session ahead of qualifying.

Who is Oliver Bearman?

  • Bearman is from Chelmsford in Essex
  • The teenager joined the Ferrari Driver Academy in 2021
  • He won the 2021 Italian and ADAC (German) F4 titles
  • Bearman finished third in his rookie F3 campaign in 2022 behind the highly rated duo of Victor Martins and Zane Maloney
  • The Briton won four F2 races in his maiden season in 2023 on his way to sixth in the championship
  • He made his F1 weekend debut in first practice at the 2023 Mexico City GP and he season-ending Abu Dhabi GP
  • Bearman is the team-mate of exciting Mercedes junior Kimi Antonelli in F2 this year at Prema

"Carlos is out of surgery," said Ferrari in a statement released after Bearman had driven in final practice.

"Everything went well and he is now resting at the hospital. We send him our full support for a quick recovery."

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

F2 championship leader Theo Pourchaire goes into the side of Oliver Bearman, sending them both off track

Bearman, who featured in practice for Haas in Mexico and Abu Dhabi last season, had taken pole position on Thursday's F2 qualifying session, but will not feature in the feeder series' races over the remainder of the weekend.

The Prema driver finished sixth in his debut F2 campaign in 2023, winning three feature races and one sprint race.

Also See:

Berman used the number 38 on his car as he became the 14th British driver to race for Ferrari in F1 and the first since Eddie Irvine left the team in 2000.

Seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton is joining the Italian team in 2025 in place of Sainz.

The Spaniard, who has yet to secure a seat for 2025, took an impressive third-placed podium finish at last weekend's season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

Sainz is the second F1 driver in the space of two years to miss a race with appendicitis, following Williams driver Alex Albon being ruled out of the 2022 Italian Grand Prix with the same illness.

Sky Sports F1's live Saudi Arabian GP schedule

Friday March 8

  • 4.10pm: Saudi Arabian GP Qualifying build-up

Saturday March 9

  • 12pm: F1 Academy Race 2
  • 1.20pm: F2 Feature Race
  • 3.30pm: Saudi Arabian GP build-up: Grand Prix Saturday
  • 7pm: Saudi Arabian GP reaction: Chequered flag
  • 9.30pm: Saudi Arabian GP highlights

Watch the second round of the new F1 season - the Saudi Arabian GP - live on Sky Sports F1 this coming week, with qualifying on Friday and the race at 5pm on Saturday. Stream every F1 race and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership for just £21 a month for 12 months

Anthony Joshua's heavyweight showdown with Francis Ngannou takes place on Friday March 8, live on Sky Sports Box Office with the main event expected around 11pm. Book Joshua v Ngannou now!

Get Sky Sports on WhatsApp!

Sky Sports WhatsApp channel

You can now start receiving messages and alerts for the latest breaking sports news, analysis, in-depth features and videos from our dedicated WhatsApp channel!

Find out more here.

Around Sky