08.12.22 NL Blog
Abu Dhabi GP: The story behind my weekend
I’d heard great things about Singapore from team members and other drivers before this weekend. But now I’m here and I’ve seen the street circuit in the flesh, the prospect of racing on it under lights has got me even more excited about this race.
And the expectation is heightened more by the fact Singapore is the first of the two remaining tracks on the F1 calendar that I haven’t yet driven at. With COVID the past two years, we haven’t been able to go to Singapore or Japan – and they’re both massive races that you look forward to as an F1 driver.
I’m expecting Singapore to be very challenging. It’s known as one of the most physically-demanding tracks of the year by far, because it has 23 legit corners, and it’s always around a two-hour race which sets it apart from other races as well.
Even just learning the track on the simulator is memorising as it takes a few laps to get your head around things. But I’m looking forward to it and I’ve been doing some different kinds of training to help acclimatise to the expected heat and humidity.
I haven’t gone into saunas or anything like that. But I’ve added three or four extra layers when I’ve been running with my trainer and I’ve also cranked up the heat in my apartment when I’ve been on my Turbo Trainer. I find that putting a portable heater underneath my bike and getting layered up definitely makes you sweat!
From a suitability perspective, this is a track that’s probably going to be one of the worst for our car because it requires maximum downforce, is very bumpy, and there’s lot of slow speed corners as well. These are all things that we’ve found challenging so far this season. So, it’s not looking good on paper.
But I’m still excited to see what the weekend brings. It could be quite wet which could make it interesting and present us with some situations that we may be able to take advantage of.
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