Opener goes with a bang

Maxi starts new season with win and a record

This weekend marked the official start of Maximilian Günther’s 2014 season. The 16-year-old tackled the first three Formel ADAC races in the Motorsport Arena Oschersleben. And with some success: in qualifying, Maxi secured second place on the grid for the first race and pole position for the second round. The Mücke Motorsport youngster ended Race 1 on Saturday in second place and secured his first victory of the season in the second race on Sunday morning. He came home in eighth place in the final fixture to secure vital championship points.

A victory right at the start – how important is that?

Last season, it took a while for the bubble to burst and for him to notch up his first victory – but in 2014, Maximilian is stepping on the gas right from the start in terms of wins. His success in the second race was his third victory overall in Formel ADAC. That may yet prove to be a good omen: In the past six years, five drivers who later went on to become champions won at least one race in Oschersleben. “That was a good beginning to the new season,” said Maxi positively, summing up events. “A win at the start gives you self confidence. I can now approach the next race feeling more relaxed, but I’m very aware of how tough the competition is. We know where we can improve and hope to be even stronger in the future.”

Pole record broken – how does that feel?

A qualifying session for the history books: Maximilian broke a very special Formel ADAC record with his pole position. He has so far taken nine pole positions in the course of the past two seasons. Before Oschersleben, he shared a place forever inscribed in the record books with the two ex Formel ADAC champions, Daniel Abt (2009) and Pascal Wehrlein (2011), who each achieved eight poles. “To be honest, I’m not a statistics freak,” said Maxi candidly. “But of course, I was very happy when I heard I’d got the record. It’s so cool to be associated with successful drivers like Daniel Abt and Pascal Wehrlein. I see it more in the nature of a moment in time, though, because I just want to come out on top ultimately.”

Maxi’s lessons from Oschersleben

1. “Put your foot down hard by all means – but think first: Sometimes, second place is better than going for the win at any price.”
2. “No success without teamwork: The guys at Mücke have produced a terrific car for me yet again.”
3. “Launching overtaking manoeuvres is practically impossible in Oschersleben, which is why qualifying is so important.”

What next?

Maximilian travels to the next race weekend in Zandvoort (May 9th to 11th) in second place overall. None of the Formel ADAC drivers have ever had any experience of racing on the dune circuit. However, Maxi made a strong impression during testing and is aiming for the next set of top results. Maxi: “I really like Zandvoort. The circuit reminds me a bit of Spa with its uphill and downhill sections – I feel really good on such tracks. Zandvoort is a proper white-knuckle track with a high ratio of full throttle segments and tough corners like Tarzanbocht. Of course, wind and sand also play a role, as we discovered in testing. Things went very well for us in the tests, so I’m full of confidence for the trip to the Netherlands. Unfortunately I won’t need my swimming trunks. On a race weekend there will definitely be no time for swimming!”

Foto: ADAC Formel Masters