Backstage –………towards F1
Last weekend represented not only the second appointment of the F1 racing season, but it was also the opening weekend of those preparatory championships which have the important mission of forging the future world champions.
Just in concomitance with the Malaysian GP, the GP2 racing season took its start at Sepang circuit. The GP2 Championship was created to complete drivers’ apprenticeship and facilitate their access into the top category, “I think we reached the 80% of our goal. The economic crisis didn’t help the programme, as F1 teams have to face with their financial resources, as well. This is the reason why, especially over the last few 3-4 years, the drivers who could bring a great amount of money to teams were favoured. It is still a valuable championship, as the car used to race is powerful and demanding. Driving that car, you can learn how to control yourself and it’s a good training for a future step into F1”, said the manager Giovanni Minardi. “I’m expecting this championship to be hard-fought and difficult, as showcased by qualifying where 16 drivers crossed the line within 1 second. Tyres will rule the race, as well as drivers’ consistency. Now 6-7 drivers are competing for the world title. Among them we can find Coletti, Cecotto, Ericsson, Calado and Bird, five young drivers whose performance level wasn’t consistent in the past”.
At the same time the curtain rose over the Auto GP and the FIA International F3 Championship at Monza National Circuit “It’s still too early to make a prediction regarding Auto GP, as the grid is composed both by very young drivers (who are just 18) and more experienced ones. It will be so interesting to see how many of them will contest the whole season, because, starting from the next race, there will be more cars involved. Riccardo Agostini powerfully got the pole, but some issues during the race made him lose the podium”, said also Minardi “Regarding the FIA F3 Championship, the driver Marciello is contesting his second Championship, so he must win it. He took a great start of season, but he has to pay attention to many other drivers who are competing for the title: his teammate Lynn and some outsiders such as Auer, Buller, who delivered very good performances during practices at the wheel of the Dallara-Nissan and Rosenqvist with the Dallara-Mercedes. To Marciello’s benefit, Wehrlein will be promoted to DTM, starting form next race. We should also keep eyes on Giovinazzi (Dallara-Mercedes), who is at his first experience in such a demanding championship.”
Giovanni, in his long experience as a manager, helped drivers such as Maldonado to make his first step into the world of F1 by making him test a Minardi F1 car. He’s presently the manager of another great driver, Davide Rigon, “There isn’t a recipe to understand if a driver has that extra oomph. All is given by the match of different aspects. First of all it’s very important to follow a driver and see him acting on track to know his driving style. Then, it’s so important to have a deep knowledge of the championship, of the team he runs with and of the curriculum. The driver’s improvement throughout the season is also another important item to be carefully taken into consideration. To end up, you have to know the racing environment in details, as it changes so quickly”, ended up the manager from Faenza.