The complexity of the new car made Formula 2 drivers face “gambling” starting in the Bahrain round last week.
Many F2 drivers seem to have difficulty mastering the start of the opening round of the 2018 season last week. As a result, some of them are trapped on the grid or start the race from the pit lane position.
The problem is believed to lie in the search for a bite point from the clutch of a new car, and the driver must divide their focus between removing the clutch and stepping on the gas pedal.
Unlike the previous generation cars that are powered by the Naturally Aspirated engine (GP2 / 11), the F2 2018 car is powered by a turbocharger.
Some of the victims of the complexity of the start include Prema driver from Indonesia, Sean Gelael, and DAMS driver, Alexander Albon.
“Some teams have started to know how to deal with new couplings,” said Albon.
“Then there are other teams that are still having difficulties, such as us, ART, and Prema. This is almost like gambling. Between we experience a stall, or even twist. If I lose six or seven positions at each start, this will be a long season . ”
Carlin rider Lando Norris, who won the feature race and executed two good starts in the Bahrain round, believes that high precision is needed to get a perfect start.
“We have worked harder than other teams about how to start,” said the McLaren F1 team reserve driver.
“We can be more precise in getting a good start. While others seem to still have difficulties.”
Defending champion GP3 and ART racer, George Russell, twice had problems starting. First in the feature race he experienced wheel-spin while sliding, and then in the sprint race he just couldn’t leave the grid box.
“Mistake racers, that’s what happened,” said Russell, who is also a junior Mercedes racer.
“Five or six stall racers in the second race, and at least two racers [in the feature race]. Cars are very difficult to slide, even when in the pit lane.
“The clutch is very sensitive. The operation window is very small, which means drivers must be really accurate in managing their clutches.”
Additional reports by Oleg Karpov and Scott Mitchell