06.01.21 NL Blog
2020 in review, part 3: What made me frown...
“It’s been good to have a bit of time off since the last race at Sochi to regroup, reset and refocus.
I’ve been at the factory for meetings and had a couple of days in the simulator, but I also managed to squeeze in a trip to Whilton Mill kart track for some bonus training.
It’s a great track, about an hour away from Grove, and I went with my trainer, some team engineers and a selection of shifter karts to see what we could do.
The British Autumn weather wasn’t great, and conditions were stormy and wet, but that only added to the fun!
And it looks like the experience might come in handy for this week’s race in Germany. The forecast shows rain is a possibility, and even if it stays dry the predicted cold temperature will make this one an unusual challenge.
Cooler temperatures make it easier on things like the engine and the brakes, but it’s a more complicated story for the tyres, especially getting them into the right performance window. Usually we only drive in such cold conditions at the pre-season test.
Another unknown is the event itself. This will be the first race at the Nurburgring since 2013 and pretty much everyone’s going to be starting afresh. Hopefully that creates more of a challenge and considering where we are on the grid, anything that can provide an opportunity to move forward is something I’ll relish.
The last time I visited the Nurburgring was back in 2015, when I raced in Formula Renault 3.5, and that was on the full track – prior to that I’d only even been on the shorter loop used in European Formula 3. It is one of the more old-school tracks, bumpier and with mixed characteristics. It’s been the setting for some exciting Formula 1 races in the past so hopefully it’ll be an entertaining return for us this weekend.”
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