Kevin Magnussen Q&A: Singapore Grand PrixSeptember 28, 2022
Kevin looks ahead to this weekend's Singapore Grand Prix, a circuit where he holds the lap record.
For Round 17 of the 2022 FIA Formula 1 World Championship, the pinnacle of motorsport returns to Singapore for the first time since 2019. What are your memories of the circuit and how excited are you about returning to another standout race in the calendar?
“I really like Singapore. In general, I really enjoy street tracks and I would say Singapore is one of the best street circuits there is. It’s a very physical race, so it’s always the one that you’re thinking of when you’re struggling in the gym and that gives you motivation to keep pushing on your fitness.”
You proudly hold the lap record around the Marina Bay Circuit with a time 1:41.905 in 2018 and also achieved the fastest lap of the race in 2019. Do you think it’s a record you’ll retain after the race this weekend and are you the type of driver that keeps track of records and stats?
“I got the fastest lap twice – in 2018 and 2019 – with new tires on at the end of the race. In those two races we didn’t score points I don’t think so it’s not something that I’m that proud of, as it didn’t come with points. I’d be way more proud to score points and hope to do so this year.”
It’s arguably one of the toughest races for drivers with humid weather and bumpy street surfaces all while having to navigate 23 corners. How as drivers can you best prepare your body for those conditions and how do you feel straight after coming out of the car after racing in such heat?
“It’s one of the toughest races because of the weather and also just because the track layout is how it is with corner, after corner, after corner without any rest. On most tracks you get a couple of straights around the lap where you can get a breather but in Singapore, even on the so-called ‘straight’, it’s still kind of turning. It’s also very bumpy so you can’t really relax.
“There’s no specific way to prepare, at least for me. I train as hard as I can, and as I said, Singapore is the race that I think of when I need some motivation to keep pushing in the gym. You can always remind yourself that you’re going to Singapore and that’s going to be a super tough one.”
In addition to the on-track physicality, the race schedule is four hours later in Singapore as we race at night. How exactly does that change your own routine – e.g. when do you wake up and go to sleep - and by race day is your mind and body adjusted or do you continue to feel that you’re eating meals at the wrong time and being allowed a lie-in?
“Often, you try to stay on European time for the weekend. It can be difficult because you have to stay up very late into the night but it’s ok, it actually helps as you don’t need to adjust to the time zone when you get there, you just continue. Of course, we go straight to Japan afterwards, so we will probably move our time zone but not too much as the race is late in the evening on Sunday, so we’ll start adjusting on Monday.”