Magnussen eager to impress

Thursday 06-February-2014 07:21

New McLaren driver Kevin Magnussen is "determined to justify the faith" that the Woking team put in him after handing him a seat for the 20014 Formula One season.

The Danish rookie was named as Sergio Perez's replacement after the Mexican had a disappointing season in 2013, and will be McLaren's first rookie driver since Lewis Hamilton made his debut in 2007.

Magnussen made a strong start to his F1 career during the season's first official testing session in Jerez, but admitted that he was nervous when he stepped into the MP4-29 for the first time.

"I'm incredibly grateful for the opportunity I've been given, and in a way it still hasn't really sunk in yet," Magnussen told the official Formula One website.

"When I got into the car for the first time at Jerez last Thursday, in fact, it still felt a bit strange. But I'm a firm believer that there are no guarantees in this world, so I'm now focusing on the work I need to do to justify the privilege of being a Formula One driver.

"I certainly don't take anything for granted - I know that all the work I did in the junior formulas was only enough to get me to the door of Formula One - and now I'm having to start all over again to prove that I deserve the opportunity to stay here. In the past few weeks, and in the next few weeks also, working closely with all the McLaren guys who've given me that opportunity, I'm determined to justify the faith that's been put in me.

"Okay, I'm a rookie, but I'm not going to focus too much on worrying about what I can't control. Besides, even for the most experienced drivers, there's always another lap you can do to feel more prepared. So my aim is to work hard, get myself comfortable with the car - comfortable enough that I can really push it and lean on it - and then take it from there.

"Anyway, I've got total faith in McLaren's engineers and mechanics, and it's clear that they're offering me the right guidance and assistance. They're all great guys. Lastly, I don't think anyone can predict with much confidence what's going to happen in the opening races, whether you're a super-experienced world champion like Jenson or a rookie like me."

© 2014 - 365 Media Group

Any reproduction, publication or redistribution of this material without the written agreement of 365 Media Group is strictly forbidden.