F3: Erik Janis's racing season starts this weekend All testing and long waiting is belonging to the past and Erik Janis and his 29 rivals are going to face the first weekend of competition of the Euro Series F3 2008. The season starts this...
F3: Erik Janis's racing season starts this weekend
All testing and long waiting is belonging to the past and Erik Janis and his 29 rivals are going to face the first weekend of competition of the Euro Series F3 2008. The season starts this weekend at Hockenheim. The schedule of the respected series offers, as usual, two races during the weekend. The first race is on Saturday, the second on Sunday. It is going to be a double debut for the twenty years old Czech driver as he has never raced not only in the F3 Euro series but also with an F3 car overall. He is fighting for glory as a factory Mercedes-Benz driver in the Mucke Motorsport team.
The former European kart champion starts with a Dallara F908 Mercedes Benz car that is bearing starting number. Fin Mika Maki and German Christian Vietoris are his team-mates. Erik is one of the 10 rookies in the field and he will fight not for overall results but also for separate ROOKIE category.
Erik did all official winter tests of the series that started at Valencia continued at Estoril and Finished at Magny Cours. He has been using more and more to the F3 single-seater. The lap times were a proof his gap to the front has been closing all the time.
The Euro Series F3 championship started in 2003 and is the result of the merge between the German and French national series. It did not take long to get a big respect and is considered as the prime category that has been shaping future stars. Just to mention names like Lewis Hamilton, Christian Klien, Robert Kubica, Nico Rosberg, Adrian Sutila or Markus Winkelhocka all of them were able to climb up to the Formula 1 world. The Polish star Kubica raced for the Mucke's team in 2004 and it is the team where Janis is racing. The team was fighting for the title last year and Swiss Sebastien Buemi finished in the runner-up position.
The Euro Series F3 races are traditionally part of the popular DTM championship and one event at Pau is part of the WTCC race weekend.
Erik Janis: "I am looking forward to my first race weekend but I also know that I can not expect miracles in my debut in the Euro Series F3, or even in the F3 category overall. Competition is big, there are 10 rookies on the grid including me. The whole field contains 30 cars and there are drivers from the whole world. I had series of good tests under my belt, we tested at Valencia, Barcelona and Magny Cours and I am pleased that I have been able to improve continuously. I was two, three seconds behind the fastest at the beginning whle the gap is approximately half a second. I did over 1000 kilometres in testing. My main aim for the weekend is to improve gradually. The Mucke Motorsport offer a great conditions, I have been working very well with the engineers and my team-mates."
Antonin Charouz, Janis's manager: "If Erik finished he season in the top ten it would be great. However, I do not want to set any goals. I see that he is fully dedicated to the racing and he has been improving in the tests. I hope he will move up in the order."
Peter Mucke, Team principal: "Erik did quite a good job during the preseason tests. He improved a lot, especially in the last test at Magny Cours. I hope that he will be able to drive close to the top ten in his debut at Hockenheim. It would be a good result for him in the incredibly competitive field."
Hans-Jurgen Mattheis, Mercedes Benz HWA manager: "Erik Janis is a very talented driver, which is the reason why we have selected him to our junior program. I think that we can achieve great results together. He will have full support of our team and I believe that he will be able to use it. Information from the preseason tests just confirmed it."