Raoul Hyman had neither sat in a Formula 2 car nor seen Bahrain’s Sakhir Grand Prix circuit before Tuesday, but none of that stopped the South African from delivering an impressive 11th quickest time for Campos Racing in the opening day of the series’ three day test at the Gulf circuit on Wednesday.
Hyman, who was afforded his Formula 2 opportunity on the strength of his showing in last week’s GP3 test for Campos in Portugal, spent the morning settling into the most powerful and fastest car he has ever driven, before settling down to work in the afternoon. “I spent the morning getting comfortable in the car,” Raoul explained.
“This is an awesome car to drive, but I found the biggest challenge was to get used to the carbon brakes – getting the temperature into them between push laps is critical, otherwise you just do not have the stopping power in the first few turns. “So I did a large number of laps in the morning, just acclimatizing, rather than concentrating on setting a time”
“Conditions were changeable this afternoon, so I’m pleased to have finished eighth on my first ever run in a Formula 2 car, even though I was still getting used to the brakes. “I locked up in the final turn and overshot on my quick lap and that definitely cost me time, so I’m quite confident that there’s more to come.
“I am really excited to be here, and I am still learning and building – it really is an awesome car to drive and I have a big smile on my face – I can’t wait for tomorrow!”
Formula 2, which runs alongside Formula 1 on the grand prix circuit through the bulk of the season, was renamed from GP2 at the end of 2016. The Bahrain test runs over three days Wednesday to Friday 31 March.