Davison ready for British F3 opener. Aussie eyeing a podium on debut at Donington Park. The weeks of pre-season testing are over and Australian international racing star Will Davison is about to embark this weekend on the most important season...
Davison ready for British F3 opener.
Aussie eyeing a podium on debut at Donington Park.
The weeks of pre-season testing are over and Australian international racing star Will Davison is about to embark this weekend on the most important season of his racing life in the British Formula 3 Championship.
The 20-year-old will make his debut in the series this weekend at the opening round at Donington, driving the #1 Alan Docking Racing Dallara/Mugen-Honda. He see this opening event as an important weekend in terms of gauging himself against his opposition.
"A podium is my goal for the weekend but it's going to be very tough," said the Melbourne-born and Buckinghamshire-based racer.
"The potential's there to qualify in the top few positions and finish there but because it's so close, you have to get everything right in qualifying. In the end it's up to me. I have to get the most out of the tyres and get a good run in traffic. I know I can do all that but it just takes one little thing to put you back a few spots.
"There's 10 guys who could potentially finish on the podium. All four Carlin Motorsport cars will be quick, then there's Robert Dahlgren and his Fortec team and Danny Watts, who I raced against in Formula Renault last year.
"Most of the corners at Donington have straights leading after them so exit speed is important. At the first corner at Redgate it's important to make sure you carry the speed into the apex but also important to get your minimum speed at the right spot of the corner so you can carry speed through the Craner Curves that follow."
Davison concedes that passing opportunities are limited at Donington, which places an added emphasis on qualifying at the front of the field.
"It will be difficult unless the guy in front makes a mistake. Most of the corners are quick and flowing but into the first corner is a potential passing spot or into the last chicane. We're using the shorted 'national' circuit this weekend rather than the 'Grand Prix' track that has an added hairpin and short straights in it."
Lap times during testing indicate that a lap in the 1m03s bracket will be a quick time. There are two qualifying sessions, which are separate and determine the grid positions for the two rounds separately.
Davison will test today (tonight Australian time) as a final shakedown before the weekend, with three hours of track time giving his ADR squad one last chance to ensure everything is in readiness.
The team will not use the latest aerodynamic and suspension kits this weekend due to a lack of opportunity to test them, but Davison is confident that they have a fast car that they are familiar with, and also a car with which they have a comfortable set-up.
"I've done the preparation, I'm as ready as I can be so we'll get in there and give it everything and wave that Australian flag," said Davison.
"We won't run the new aero kit because we haven't done enough testing with it. There's definitely time (to be made up on the track) in the new suspension, though we had a run with it and it totally changed the balance of the car so we need to test it more before we race it."
Davison, who won the 2001 Australian Formula Ford Championship and finished fourth in last year's ultra-competitive British Formula Renault Championship, has impressed many in England, recently tagged by leading motorsport publication 'Autosport' as a fancied favourite for the 2003 title.
"It's only early days yet ... but I have a sneaky feeling that the Alan Docking Racing team has unearthed another gem in Will Davison," wrote Chief Staff Writer, Marcus Simmons. "So who's going to win the title?" he continued. "It's a toughie, but I have a suspicion it might be Davison."