Felipe Drugovich emerged as the standout rookie during Friday’s practice session in Abu Dhabi, claiming the second-fastest time behind George Russell. The young Brazilian’s performance in the Aston Martin car showcased significant improvements since his last run, hinting at a promising weekend ahead for the team.
Catch up quick:
- Felipe Drugovich, stepping in for Fernando Alonso, secured second place in FP1, just shy of Mercedes’ pace-setter George Russell.
- Drugovich’s session involved aero testing and a chance to push on soft tires, indicating progress since his last outing at Monza.
- Aston Martin’s performance director praised Drugovich’s maturity and the valuable data collected, which could influence the constructor’s championship battle.
- The Brazilian rookie is set to continue his development with Aston Martin during the post-season young drivers test.
In the sun-drenched Yas Marina Circuit, Felipe Drugovich didn’t just drive; he soared, clocking a lap time that had the paddock buzzing. With a mix of technical aero testing and a thrilling soft tire blitz, Drugovich wasn’t just checking boxes; he was rewriting expectations for a rookie.
The Aston Martin team, with eyes on overtaking McLaren for fourth in the constructors’ standings, found a data goldmine in Drugovich’s performance. The young driver’s feedback from the cockpit is not just valuable; it’s a potential game-changer as the season’s climax approaches.
Tom McCullough, Aston Martin’s performance director, couldn’t hide his satisfaction. Drugovich’s blend of youthful vigor and surprising poise has given the team a boost, not just for the weekend but for the crucial data-driven decisions ahead.
As the sun sets on the 2023 season, Drugovich’s role is far from over. The upcoming young drivers test is a golden opportunity for him to deepen his bond with the AMR23, exploring its limits and adding layers to his burgeoning talent.
Meanwhile, the team veterans, Alonso and Stroll, aren’t resting on their laurels. Despite disruptions in FP2, they’re laser-focused on Sunday’s race, ready to scrap for every point in a bid to leapfrog McLaren and end the year with a bang.
Stay tuned as we bring you the latest twists and turns from the F1 finale in Abu Dhabi. Follow the high-speed drama on Facebook and Twitter for all the updates you won’t want to miss!