Voisin ahead of second GB3 season: ‘There’s only really one goal’

Callum Voisin made his first competitive step into single-seaters just 12 months ago, but after finishing fourth in the GB3 Championship, the British-Swiss driver is returning to the series as a title favourite in 2023 with Rodin Carlin. Feeder Series spoke to him ahead of the new season.

By George Brabner

Three race victories, a further three podiums and the Jack Cavill Pole Position Cup for the most poles: the raw statistics would indicate a successful season for just about any driver.

These accomplishments belong to Callum Voisin, who notched them up in his first season in single-seaters last year in the GB3 Championship.

Following a run to sixth place in the Ginetta Junior Championship in 2021, he skipped the typical step into Formula 4 machinery for 2022, heading straight to GB3 with Carlin.

“It was a bold move for sure. I did do a test day in a Formula 4 which also went quite well, but after that, it was ‘let’s have a go in a GB3, see how it goes’ and then that test went really well,” he said.

“Then it was all kind of trying to get a season in GB3 sorted and try and make this happen really. It was probably the best decision I have made, and my family have made, throughout my career really.”

It was probably the best decision I have made, and my family have made, throughout my career

Voisin on his decision to skip Formula 4 and go straight to GB3

Now, Voisin returns to the GB3 Championship after a positive testing programme this winter, as the series gears up for its return in April at Oulton Park.

“I think there’s only really one goal this season, and that’s to win. Obviously, you don’t really know until halfway through the year where you kind of are in the championship order, but so far, with testing and so forth, everything indicates that we can do that,” he told Feeder Series.

Having the confidence to perform

There’s no doubt that Voisin left an impression in GB3 last season. His campaign had hiccups, but as an inexperienced single-seater driver with only a full-time ride in Ginettas under his belt, Voisin turned heads by coming straight in to fight for race victories and podiums. As his second campaign in GB3 rolls around, experience is starting to turn in his favour.

“Last year, coming in as a newbie and kind of fighting with the guys that eventually won the championship and that were battling for the championship, I think I know what do this year, I know how to win this. So I know what to expect and yeah I think we’ll give it our best shot.”

Voisin remains with Rodin Carlin for the 2023 season | Credit: GB3

Whilst testing has been encouraging so far this winter, the championship features plenty of competition who could take the fight to Voisin this season. Formula One driver academy members, Formula 4 champions and GB3 race winners all join Voisin on the grid, and they will be pushing him just as hard as he will be pushing them.

“There’s easily around 10 people who I think can have a shot at the championship. You’ve got a few returning drivers like Matthew Rees and John [Bennett], my teammate, and then you’ve got some new guys such as Alex Dunne, Souta Arao – they should be up there.

“If you beat them, then it’s only a confidence booster, really. Obviously, you want to beat everybody, so for sure it’s going to be very close – it was close last year in qualifying and stuff like that, so I think this year it’s only going to be closer,” Voisin explained.

The importance of consistency

One of the key features of Voisin’s return to GB3 is that he remains with Carlin (now Rodin Carlin) for a second season.

The series currently sees nine drivers returning for a second shot at the title, but only four of those spent the majority of the 2022 season with the same outfit they’ll be driving for this year.

“I think it’s kind of an underestimated advantage, staying with your team. I’ve got a really good relationship with my engineer, and we work really well together. And as well, I know the team, I know how they work, they know what I like, I know what they like,” he explained.

“We know it’s a winning combination. Last year we had a few wins, so for sure, it only helps really. Not to say that moving to a different team never works – sometimes it does, and some people go really well, but I think for us it made sense to stay. Carlin have been very good to us over the past 12 months.”

We know it’s a winning combination

Callum Voisin on him and Rodin Carlin

Whilst these familiar faces on the grid may well play to Voisin’s advantage as the season goes on, it’s his own consistency on the track that he wants to improve in order to fight for the title.

“Last year, my main problem was probably consistency. Usually, we’d have one really good race like a podium or a win, and then in the other race I’d make a mistake, or something would happen or whatever, so definitely, I think that comes naturally with a bit of experience,” he said.

Intra-team relationships at Carlin

Whilst Voisin remains, his 2022 teammates Roberto Faria and Javier Sagrera have moved on. In their places come rookie Costa Toparis and GB3 podium finisher John Bennett from Elite Motorsport, completing a strong trio for the Rodin Carlin team – who finished only eleven points behind teams’ champions Hitech GP in 2022.

Just as a challenge from the outside always pushes drivers, so does competition from within, and that has been the case in testing thus far for Voisin with Bennett and Toparis.

“Going from karting to GB3 is a huge step,” he said of Toparis’ debut in the series. “He’s adapted very well and he’s pushing me and John just as much as anybody else really, so it’s nice to have him in the team and hopefully we can move forwards.

Meanwhile, Bennett is a name that’s already familiar in the GB3 paddock. He took a podium on his way to eighth in the championship last season and continued to prove his speed through the winter.

Voisin achieved three wins in the 2022 GB3 season | Credit: GB3

“I think throughout testing we’ve been kind of pushing each other forward which I think only helps the team and ourselves. It is quite frustrating with John because every time, you know he’ll pull something out of the bag when you least expect it!” Voisin explained.

“It is great and it’s nice to have a teammate that you know they did it last year, so you know they’ll be a strong contender for the championship this year. And it’s nice to have that reference.”

Heading to mainland Europe

The GB3 calendar remains largely untouched for the 2023 season. The series will continue to visit the high-risk high-reward British venues that make the series unique compared to many other European championships. These circuits play a large role in developing drivers, Voisin explained.

“The calendar this year is also really strong. We go to the same kind of old-school tracks which you learn a lot – there’s no room for error – such as Brands Hatch, Oulton Park,” he said.

It’s like nothing you’ve experienced before, so I think it’s going to be really fun

Voisin on GB3’s inaugural race at Zandvoort

Alongside the series’ annual visit to Spa Francorchamps in the Ardennes, where Voisin briefly held victory before Tommy Smith was handed the win on countback following a red flag, comes a new international addition in the form of Zandvoort Circuit in the Netherlands. It’s a challenge Voisin is excited to take on.

“I think Zandvoort is going to be really interesting. It’s going to be hard to overtake, such as the Formula One races when they go there. It’s pretty tricky to overtake, but I think it’s [got] such a character, that place. I went during the winter and the banking is amazing. It’s like nothing you’ve experienced before, so I think it’s going to be really fun!

“Usually, you have one away trip per year. Now we’ve got two. So a double holiday if you’d like!” Voisin said with a laugh.

Header image credit: GB3 Championship

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