I NEED TO GO OUT WITH A BANG!
Jordan King will conclude his 2016 GP2 season this weekend with a second Formula 1 Free Practice 1 appearance and the climax to his GP2 campaign. Ahead of Abu Dhabi, he offers some insight into his approach
Date: 24 / 11 / 2016
You will make your second appearance for Manor Racing in Free Practice 1 this weekend at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. What did you learn from your first experience in Austin last month that you can take into this session?
The biggest thing is that I will know exactly what to expect this time and I will feel a little more in my stride. I won’t be using as much mental energy in the lead-up to the event because I’ve done it before and will feel more in control of the situation. Then obviously I will know the car better than last time and the Austin experience will still be fresh in my mind. The last time I was in a racing car, it was the Manor at the US Grand Prix.
This time you’ll be at a circuit with which you are familiar, having raced previously at Yas Marina in GP2. Will that make a difference?
Yes, definitely. Austin was a double challenge as I had to learn the circuit as quickly as I could learn the car. I’ve done a good dozen days around Yas Marina over the course of time, so that side of things won’t be a problem. I’ll get up to speed pretty quickly, and also I’m out in the GP2 directly before the F1 session, so it’ll just be a case of adapting from one car to the other and adjusting my driving style accordingly.
This weekend is also the GP2 season finale. You’re fifth in the points and the top British driver. What will be your approach?
I need to go out with a bang and finish 2016 with some great results. The last few years I’ve managed to end seasons with decent results and I don’t want this one to be any different. I want a solid weekend, at least a podium and as always I’ll be aiming for the win. It’s always nice to finish a season in that way and close in on fourth and perhaps even third in the championship.
How would you rate your GP2 season?
It’s been a very positive year, very solid – but I wouldn’t say it has been exactly what I wanted. I’m fifth in the championship, but I would have liked to be challenging for the crown coming into the final weekend. Saying that, fifth is far from a disaster. We’ve had a couple of wins and podiums, but have dropped too many points along the way to challenge for the title.
What are your thoughts on 2017 at this stage?
Of course, racing in Formula 1 is my ultimate career objective but there are other options open to me, so who knows what will happen? Nothing has been sorted yet and it all remains to be seen.
What are you looking forward to during the off-season?
The biggest thing I’ve got coming up is an eight-week training camp down in Bath. I’m looking forward to getting stuck into that, to work on my fitness. It’ll be nice to have a consistent training programme rather than one week on, then flying away somewhere for a race.
What sort of training will you be doing?
It’s at Bath University and I’ll be doing everything from aerobic work to conditioning, swimming, hydrotherapy and much more. I have a week off for Christmas, but other than that it’s six days a week, two sessions a day through December and into January. That’s my winter!