It’s perhaps little surprise to learn that well-funded Indonesian driver Sean Gelael is the first to be confirmed on the 2018 Formula 2 Championship entry list, however the same cannot be said of the identity of his employer: PREMA Racing.
Gelael’s record in the junior formulae has not been particularly impressive. Following a two-year stint in the FIA European F3 Championship he graduated to Formula 2’s forebear, the GP2 Series, midway through 2015 with the Carlin team. Staying on full-time in 2016 and switching to Campos Racing yielded him just two points’ finishes all season, with the highlight being a surprise second place at the Red Bull Ring.
The 2017 season saw him move teams again, this time to Arden, where he’s once again been consigned to the role of backmarker save for a double-points’ finish at a rain-affected Monza.
The 21-year-old has also had a number of test and FP1 outings with Scuderia Toro Rosso’s F1 team this year.
His results in GP2/F2 do not earmark him as a driver on PREMA’s radar, particularly given the team has claimed the Drivers’ Championship title for Pierre Gasly and Charles Leclerc respectively in the two years since it joined the championship in 2016.
Gelael’s longevity in GP2/F2 can perhaps be put down to the financial clout of his father Ricardo, whose Fast Food Indonesia conglomerate (which owns the country’s KFC franchise network that generates $400 million a year in gross sales) has its stickers emblazoned on many of the cars the youngster has raced to-date.
Image via FIA Formula 2 Championship