Formula 1

Haas Reserve Driver Pietro Fittipaldi: “It was a short FP1 but at least I got a run in”

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Credit: Sam Bloxham / LAT Images

Pietro Fittipaldi was happy to be back behind the wheel of a FIA Formula 1 World Championship car on Friday at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, even though his day was restricted to just nine laps due to an issue with turbo issue.

The Brazilian was participating in his first official Free Practice session since he raced for the Haas F1 Team in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in 2020, but he was forced to stop with a turbo issue on his car, which will also have a knock-on effect on the driver he was replacing for the session, Kevin Magnussen.

A replacement turbo was needed for the car, meaning Magnussen will take a five-place grid penalty for Sunday’s Mexico City Grand Prix

Fittipaldi hopes that his second outing with the team in Abu Dhabi next month will be longer and better, but at least he has some experience of the VF-22 before he attacks the Yas Marina Circuit.

“It was good to get back in the car – obviously it was only for a few of laps – but it was good to get the feeling of driving a Formula 1 car on a different track, which is an amazing circuit,” said Fittipaldi.  “I’m very happy for the opportunity and I felt very comfortable, very quickly in the car.

“We weren’t using DRS on the first run and we were running competitively, so I was really happy. Then again, going onto a new tyre we were going to make a step but then unfortunately we had the issue.

“I was happy that I was able to get back into the rhythm quickly in the car and feel good and confident. It was a short FP1 but at least I got a run in, and in Abu Dhabi, I can come back into the car warmed up.”

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