McLaren’s Carlos Sainz reckons he’ll need just “10 laps” to be back to 100 per cent once racing resumes in July.
Some drivers have claimed they will be “a little rusty” when Formula 1 returns to action in Austria next month, having not driven an F1 car since pre-season testing in February.
Meanwhile it will have been seven months since they drove a car on the limit following the 2019 season finale in Abu Dhabi.
There will be no test prior to the first race of the delayed season, but Sainz is confident he will quickly re-adapt during the opening practice session of the weekend and after just a handful of laps, it’ll be like the break never happened.
“To find the proper limit of a Formula 1 car? I think it will take a few laps to feel exactly 100%, but not many,” he told the official Formula 1 website.
“Maybe FP1, you go out with a hard set of tyres, you do push, cool, push, cool, push, then all of a sudden you put a new set on and go quicker and you say: ‘oh, now I start to feel the G-forces and the braking points’ and I get my head around a Formula 1 car again.
“I would say not more than 10 laps and I am back to 100%.”
With F1 factories reopening following an extended shutdown due to the coronavirus, drivers will be able to take advantage of the simulator over the next couple of weeks to reacquaint themselves.
“First I want to be able to go back to see my engineers, my mechanics, have a conversation with them, have a chat with them and a catch up,” added Sainz, who will join Ferrari in 2021.
“I want to go back into the real McLaren simulator and start testing some things to prepare for the first race, that will get my excitement and my adrenaline going. That will mean we’re close to the first race of the year.”