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Monger drives Formula 1 car at Rockingham

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Monger drives Formula 1 car at Rockingham
Jun 29, 2018, 3:28 PM

Billy Monger enjoyed a "bit of a shock to the system" after realising a childhood dream when he was given a surprise chance to drive a Formula 1 car.

The 19-year-old visited Rockingham on Tuesday believing he was going to do more training with stuntman Terry Grant, who worked with Monger ahead of his appearance at this year's Autosport International.

But on arrival, Monger, who suffered a double leg amputation following a British Formula 4 crash last year, was presented with a 2011 Sauber to drive.

"It's definitely not something I was expecting to do but I had a feeling something was going on as my family were acting a little strange," said Monger, who returned to racing this season and took a podium in his first race back at Oulton Park.

"I was probably a little worried at first [about crashing the car] when I turned up and there's an F1 car there.

"It was a Sauber car from 2011 but it had a slightly different powertrain and the aero was a bit different I think. I think we were out for about 12 laps."

The car, which is operated by Heritage F1 – a company that refurbishes and sells historic F1 cars – was adapted with hand controls similar to those Monger uses in BRDC British F3 with Carlin this year.

The session took place during the track day lunch break at Rockingham and was organised as part of a programme which will feature on Sky Sports F1 at the weekend in the build-up to the Austrian Grand Prix.

"It's a big step up from the British F3 car and it's just completely different in every aspect," added Monger, who sits eighth in the British F3 standings.

"Everything is evolved and it was a bit of a shock to the system, the braking zones are shorter and the corner speeds are higher.

"For any young driver to get the opportunity to drive an F1 car is a massive opportunity."

Stefan Mackley

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Series Formula 1
Drivers Billy Monger