O’Ward: Driving an F1 car is an absolute pleasure

Pato O’Ward, the Mexican driver who drives in IndyCar for Arrow McLaren, will be working with the McLaren team in Abu Dhabi this weekend. Today in testing he completed more than a hundred laps and posted the second fastest time, losing less than three tenths to Esteban Ocon. In the evening, after finishing work on the track, Pato was overcome with emotion when he gave an interview on the official website of the championship.

Pato O’Ward: “It’s a great day, because the more laps, the more kilometers I drive in a Formula 1 car, the more complete my experience becomes in different areas. I can see what she can do in qualifying mode, I understand better how she works during long sets of laps, and today I was able to try everything.

Obviously I did a few quick laps at the end of the day and was quite happy with the results. I felt like I had adapted to the car, that I could make it do what I wanted: corner as I wanted.

Driving these cars gives me a lot of pleasure! They can reach such speeds that it is just an absolute pleasure! If we compare today’s experience with my work during the first training last Friday, I acted quite conservatively, because my job was to help the team.

You could say that I am proud of the role entrusted to me this weekend, when it was important for our team to end the season on a good note, with McLaren finishing fourth in the Constructors’ Championship. That’s why during practice I tried to help Lando Norris so that it would be easier for him to work behind the wheel of the MCL60 in the second and third sessions of free practice, in qualifying, and so on.

But today I had more freedom of movement, I really felt the limits of the car. Of course, it is useful to watch the work of the team’s drivers from the sidelines, to study their telemetry, to see which routes they choose, but you only really learn that when you feel everything behind the track.

I was simply amazed at the difference in the behavior of the car with a full tank of fuel, with an average and with a minimum fuel load – I felt how noticeably the car could improve!

I’ve always dreamed of racing in Formula 1, and my dream won’t change – that’s why I race in IndyCar. But I would like to take on a new challenge because I think I am a good enough rider to participate in the world championship. I have friends among Formula 1 drivers and I know I can do this job too. I really hope I get such an opportunity.

I’ve been close to this for the past five years, but I wasn’t sure if it would work, and besides, I didn’t have a super license at the time, but now I finally got it. I am very grateful to McLaren for giving me the opportunity to improve my professional skills.

If I get the chance to move to Formula 1 I would be happy to take up the challenge, but if not I will have to find a way to continue my career elsewhere.”

Source: F1 News

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