In the points at first attempt

Big premiere in Silverstone

Big premiere for Maximilian Günther: The German junior formula hope began his first FIA Formula 3 season at Silverstone. The 17-year-old finished in the points in his very first race. Maximilian kept his cool during three safety car periods, crossing the finish line in ninth place. He achieved the fourth-best result of all the 18 rookies in the field. Maxi placed twelfth in the second race at the well-established British circuit, just finishing out of the points. After a qualifying session that had been tough previously, the kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport driver moved up four places to secure more points in the rookie standings. Maximilian came home in 20th place in what was only his third race ever in the highly-rated single-seater series.

A huge field of starters – how did that feel inside the car, Maxi?

The FIA Formula 3 European championship opened the 2015 season with a record number of entrants. 35 drivers, some with years of Formula 3 experience behind them, lined up in Silverstone. Günther is one of 18 newcomers to the series and so, is entered in the rookie standings. Maxi: “In the race itself, you didn’t really notice the huge number of cars, but things were different in qualifying where it was very difficult to get a clear lap. Q1 went quite well, but I got caught up in a fair bit of traffic in the second segment. You need a bit of luck to secure a decent grid position. I think I achieved the maximum here.”

Silverstone is one of the world’s most famous racing tracks. What was it like driving there?

While some drivers were well acquainted with the historic 5.9 km track from previous years, Maximilian was breaking new ground in Silverstone. He had only one day of testing to learn one of the fastest tracks on the calendar in the run-up to his debut race weekend. Maxi: “Silverstone was mega fun. Fast turns like the Esses were a real challenge. I found racing at this circuit really special because it’s so steeped in history. What a cool experience, and I learned a lot for the upcoming races.”

Maxi’s lessons from Silverstone

1. “35 cars on a racetrack can feel like full-on motorway congestion.”
2. “Silverstone is ultra-fast – an average speed of around 190 km/h is really going some!”
3. “The first race in a new series is always something special. I just adore that feeling!”

What next?

Next stop: The Hockenheimring. The famous Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg circuit will host the second FIA Formula 3 race weekend from May 1st to 3rd when the series forms part of the DTM and is contested in front of around 100,000 spectators. “I can hardly wait to drive through the motodrome at this amazing venue,” said Maxi. “I know the track extremely well and am sure that we’ll be in a strong position there. My goal is clear. I aim to secure as many points as possible in Hockenheim.”

Foto: Alexander Trienitz