Ahead of the British Grand Prix, Kevin Magnussen has hailed the Silverstone International Circuit as “one of the best circuits” for a modern-era Formula 1 car.
Magnussen pinpointed the need for a good high-speed balance in order to perform a competitive lap at a track that holds an average speed of 230km/h and features numerous fast corners and straights. The Dane admitted that he enjoys the challenge that Silverstone poses.
“Silverstone is definitely one of the good circuits,” said Magnussen.
“It’s really fast and you’ve got some big sections with fast changes of directions. I really enjoy driving the circuit. It’s probably one of the best circuits for these new cars.
“It’s a real downforce circuit with lots of high-speed corners. We all know that high-speed corners are the most impressive in a Formula 1 car, and Silverstone is all about that.
“You need good high-speed balance as most of the corners are high speed.”
For 2018, a third DRS zone has been introduced to Silverstone – out of the final corner at Turn 18, all the way to Turn 3. The decision means that drivers can choose to reduce downforce through the flat-out corners of Abbey and Farm, formally referred to as Turns 1 and 2.
Magnussen says that overtaking is “challenging” at Silverstone, due to the effects turbulence has in the corners.
“I haven’t seen how the DRS zones are this year, whether they’ve changed them or not,” he said.
“If they haven’t changed them, then Silverstone is actually a challenging circuit to overtake. It’s all so high speed, so it is quite difficult to follow other cars. You do have some good straights – so if you’re a good chunk faster, then you will be able to overtake.
“But it’s not going to be easy.”
The Haas F1 Team driver has tasted success at Silverstone in the junior categories – winning in both British Formula 3 and the World Series by Renault. In Formula 1, Magnussen has only managed one points finish – in his debut year in 2014 with McLaren.
“I won at Silverstone in F3 and World Series by Renault – all the categories I raced there. I can’t really say which one was the best one, but I remember they were all good,” he smiled.
A fantastic Austrian Grand Prix weekend for Magnussen and Haas saw them move up in their respective championships. Finishing fifth, one place behind team-mate Romain Grosjean, elevated the Dane to seventh in the Drivers’ standings, ahead of Nico Hülkenberg. A double top five for Haas saw them move into the top five in the Constructors’ Championship; they stand just 13 points behind the fourth-placed Renault Sport Formula 1 Team, Magnussen’s former employers.