Lowdon praises Pic’s long-run pace
13 December 2011 – Graeme Lowdon is highly confident that Charles Pic will enjoy a strong induction to F1 next season. Having impressed Marussia Virgin Racing in November’s Abu Dhabi Young Driver test, the 21-year-old was signed to race alongside Timo Glock.
Pic’s rise to F1 comes after finishing fourth overall in GP2, having managed two race wins, three pole positions and a total of five podium finishes in 2011. However, it is the Frenchman’s long-run pace which has most impressed the Banbury-based outfit.
“He’s obviously got good raw speed,” team CEO Lowdon told GPUpdate.net on Tuesday. “Everybody knows it is difficult to come into Formula 1, with restricted testing and what have you, so obviously there’s a lot of learning to be done.
“We were pretty impressed in Abu Dhabi, even though it didn’t necessarily translate on the timesheets because we were asking him to do various things such as tyre tests. But what we saw was really encouraging and the main thing I would look at is his long-run pace – his long runs were really, really good, so I think he’ll be absolutely fine. I don’t think the step into Formula 1 will be too great for him at all.”
Pic replaces Belgium’s Jérôme d’Ambrosio, who statistically finished in front of more experienced team-mate Glock this year.