|Thursday, December 30, 2010 3:49AM|
I trust that you are all having a brilliant holiday season at home with your friends and family.
I returned to California at the beginning of December;, training, relaxing and preparing for race program in 2011. Before I get into the future, let me take you back a couple months and give you a brief recap as to what went on.
Once the GP3 season ended in Monza, we immediately focused our attention to 2011 and winter testing in order to best evaluate our options for next year. First on the agenda was a two-day test in Barcelona with our favorite Czech team, ISR Racing. During the two days we never feel below P3 and were consistently at the top of time sheets, which resulted in a continuation of post-season World Series by Renault testing in Aragon one week later. During this second test we set the fastest lap of the two days and were definitely establishing ourselves as a powerful package if we decided to take this route for the upcoming year.
After this, I just sat back and waited for the next opportunity to come our way and during this time I continued to work with my friend and Formula Abarth driver, Matteo Davenia. I enjoyed the F1 season finale in Abu Dhabi. Vettel did a fantastic job all year and deserved the World Championship, however personally I would have enjoyed watching Alonso and Ferrari win after what they worked through the first half of the year.
Nonetheless, watching the race on TV brought back memories of my GP2 Asia debut at the same track and I was stunned to see the amount of progress and development that had occurred in one year. Fortunately, I would get the chance to go back in mid-November for two days of GP2 main series testing. Day one I was with Arden International and while the results did not necessarily reflect it, I felt that we had quite good pace and had the chance to be in the top 5 in the afternoon had we not experienced a bit of bad luck in terms of timing. The next day I got another bite at the cracker on the 4th and final day of post-season testing and I was driving for Racing Engineering. This was a special moment for me as I had developed quite a good friendship with the team over this past year and it was great to finally get a run in their GP2 car. We focused on developing the car and every session that we took to the track, we got quicker, regardless of the amount of laps on the tires. This set us up quite well for the afternoon and we ended the day and entire test 4th overall only .1 off of the quickest lap.
These two months were great for me as I prepare for 2011. I was able to show top line pace at the next rung in the ladder to F1, at different circuits and in different machines. This came at a good time and opened up quite a few doors for the future.
Immediately after the GP2 testing in Abu Dhabi, I returned home to California and I've really enjoyed my weeks here. My training program has remained intact for the off-season, and I have actually added a new element to further increase my overall fitness; Yoga and have to say that I am nothing short of impressed.
I have also been able to spend quite a bit of time catching up with friends and meeting new ones; doing things that one would experience during a normal Christmas vacation. Skiing, paintball, meeting with sponsors, video games, and movies have all be on the agenda and it has been a nice way to reset for 2011.
Now that 2011 is upon us, I am ready to get back to Europe and return to the place where I feel most comfortable -- A Race Car. I hope that you all have a wonderful New Years Eve celebration and I will see you in 2011.
Stay Tune, Be safe and Have fun.