By Erica Southey - Motorsport.com M.com: Having experienced it first hand; what is your opinion on launch and traction control? Marc Gene: It takes away some control from the driver, but the car is still quite difficult to drive (although not...
By Erica Southey - Motorsport.com
M.com: Having experienced it first hand; what is your opinion on launch and traction control?
Marc Gene: It takes away some control from the driver, but the car is still quite difficult to drive (although not as much as before) and very difficult to set-up.
M.com: Do you think that the electronic aids take away the driver's chance to display his own skill and ability on track, thus robbing fans of seeing exciting races?
MG: Not at all. The best drivers will still show it despite the electronic aids, since traction control works on the exit of the corners and that's the easiest part of driving a F1 car. However it is true that for TV it will be a little less spectacular since the big power slides that we saw up until Bcn will not be seen any more. But at least now nobody talks about cheating.
M.com: A test driver must always be prepared to step in when a driver is unable to compete in a race. How do you stay prepared for the unexpected?
MG: There is always a complete driving kit that goes with the race team with spare helmet, overall...and I do go to most GP's, not so much in case something happens to Ralf or JP but to help on the technical side. But to be honest, I do not even think about stepping in this year, I do not want to have my chance due to a problem with my team mate.
M.com: The team and drivers rely on you for feedback to develop the car further. What kind of 'stock-taking' do you do during testing and what do you concentrate on the most?
MG: At the beginning of the year I concentrated on the electronics (traction control, auto launch and automatic gearbox) I concentrate also on engine work and tyre testing.
M.com: Everyone is talking about the BMW power and the extra 9 km/h on straights - when do you think will the car be ready to compete for the title?
MG: If we hadn't lost +-40points on the first 6 races, now we would be challenging for the title, and on this 2nd half I wouldn't be surprised if we are the team to score most points. However our real shoot will be for next year.
M.com: You have a degree in Economics. How will this fit in later in your career?
MG: It helps since once my F1 life is over, there are other things that interest me a lot some related to my Economics degree.
M.com: What message do you have for your fans?
MG: See you next year on the race weekends, but driving!!....hopefully.