Jordan King proved that pretty much whatever car you put him in, he will be a front-runner with an eye-catching performance on his debut in the hotly-contested Formula Renault Northern European Cup at Oschersleben – and as he prepares to resume his 2011 Formula Renault UK campaign, the talented young Warwickshire star has the podium firmly in his sights.
Having already taken advantage of Formula Renault UK’s long mid-summer break to try his hand at Formula Two – turning a good many heads along the way – car racing rookie Jordan’s latest adventure saw him travel to Germany to pitch himself against many of the finest junior single-seater competitors in Europe.
“When we saw the entry list, there were some of the top Formula Renault drivers on it,” revealed the highly-rated Stoneleigh-based speed demon, “so the opposition was certainly tough. Two of the top three in the Formula Renault Eurocup were there, as well as some British drivers who have won races, so I was just aiming to do as well as I could and not setting myself any targets as such. The main goal really was to get used to the car again after Formula Two – and it was really good to get back into a Formula Renault after six weeks away.”
Maturely treating the weekend as a learning experience, Jordan swiftly demonstrated just what a fast learner he is by lapping a superb fourth-quickest out of the 20 contenders in the opening practice session, right behind his former karting sparring partner Carlos Sainz, son of the two-time World Rally Champion of the same name.
Despite encountering traffic, the BRDC Rising Star would chip a further eight tenths of a second off that initial effort in the afternoon session as he confessed to really enjoying the circuit, even if he quipped that ‘it has such a short straight that you don’t really get much of a break around the lap!’
Reacclimatising himself to how he needed to drive the Formula Renault and how to get the most out of the tyres after his stint in Formula Two, changes to the track conditions ahead of qualifying counted against Jordan as the 17-year-old confessed to ‘not getting it quite right’ – but he acknowledged that ninth and seventh positions on the grid for his two races were by no means ‘horrendous’ and that he ‘could still do something from there’.
“I got a really bad start and dropped to about 15th place,” he recalled of the opening encounter. “I think that was mainly down to a lack of familiarity with the car, to be honest, because it’s a different clutch system to the one I’m used to in Britain, and completely different to the clutch in Formula Two.
“After that, though, our speed was strong and I managed to pass quite a few people and recover to eighth. I was pleased with that considering it’s quite hard to overtake round there when the gaps in lap time are so close – that made it satisfying to come through as far as we did.
“I didn’t get a great start again in race two, and it was a bit manic through the first few corners; there was a collision ahead, but fortunately I managed to navigate my way around it unscathed. After everything calmed down, we had really good pace and I settled into sixth.
“I caught the driver in fifth, but every time I got close to the back of him, I would pick up either understeer or oversteer and lost a lot of grip. I was easily quicker and could close right up onto his tail on the entry into the slower corners, but because of the Formula Renault’s aerodynamic nature, there was just no way past. Still, overall, I was happy with how the weekend went – our speed was really good and we learned a lot. At the end of the day, it was mission accomplished.”
That it certainly was, and Jordan will benefit from a second crack of the whip in the Formula Renault Northern European Cup at ex-F1 circuit Zandvoort in the Netherlands in a fortnight’s time, where a brace of top five finishes is the aim – but in the meantime, the Princethorpe College Student has the resumption of Formula Renault UK hostilities to look forward to at Snetterton this weekend.
Although he has now successfully dialled himself back into the groove with respect to the car, he remains on the back foot somewhat in that he missed half-a-day’s testing in relation to his rivals around the high-speed Norfolk circuit earlier in the summer after inadvertently decapitating a hare – a coming-together that left his Manor Competition single-seater somewhat the worse for wear. Nonetheless, he is adamant that will not hold him back.
“Given the way we performed up against some of the strongest drivers from the Formula Renault Eurocup at Oschersleben, I think we should have the pace at Snetterton,” the Hugo Boss brand ambassador confidently asserted. “I think we can pick up from where we left off before the summer break at Croft – and that means fighting for the podium.”
To keep up-to-date with Jordan’s latest career news and results, please visit: www.jordanking.co.uk
Note: These articles are written and supplied by you the competitors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Championship
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