Chilton at home in new team
27 April 2010 – Max Chilton remains upbeat as he prepares to start his first GP2 season in Barcelona next weekend. Stepping up from British Formula 3, in which he finished fourth overall for Carlin last year, the Surrey man is now competing with Tiago Monteiro's Ocean Racing Technology.
With older brother Tom having proved his pace by achieving pole position for Sunday's fourth round of the British Touring Car Championship at Rockingham, Max - who celebrated his 18th birthday last Wednesday - now finalises preparations ahead of the last non-race weekend of the GP2 off-season.
"It's a pretty big step," he explained to GPUpdate.net "F3 is quick and you get the g-force but it hasn't got the power to have the same speed and hasn't got the same size of tyres; the downforce is a third of what GP2 is, so it's a big step but I'm getting there, slowly but surely."
Chilton is also pleased with the homely feel of the Ocean squad. "I'm getting on well with my team-mate Fabio (Leimer) and it's a pretty good, friendly team, actually...everybody says every team is friendly but this is pretty friendly - they also all speak fairly good English, so it helps!"
Having focussed his racing career chiefly on the United Kingdom up until the start of 2010, Max admits that he has now encountered new challenges - faced only in international teams - such as language barriers.
"Sometimes it can be a problem when you're trying to comment or something, if they get it the wrong way or don't fully understand what you're saying," he continued. "I've had it a few times; the hardest bit is over the radio, we're having problems over the radio understanding what he's saying - I've told them to talk really slowly!"
With the new campaign set to begin at the Circuit de Catalunya on Spanish Grand Prix weekend, Chilton is confident that reliability should not be an issue: "I'm okay. Fabio's had a few problems but he always has them!"
Further pre-season feeling from Ocean Racing Technology:
Leimer hoping to overcome problems