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Excited Magnussen under no illusions

Tuesday 11-March-2014 08:44

Kevin Magnussen will realise a lifelong dream on Sunday when he starts his first F1 race, but the Dane knows he can't get too carried away.

Having been promoted from the McLaren development squad this season, the 21-year-old will make his debut at the Australian Grand Prix.

"It's crazy to even think about racing in Melbourne - I've never been to Australia before, and the grand prix has always been something that I've watched very early in the morning on TV back in Europe. To not only be arriving in a new country, but also taking part in the grand prix is incredibly exciting."

Although unspectacular, the Woking squad have had a good pre-season campaign with Magnussen not looking out of place despite having limited mileage under his belt.

The rookie admits his first aim is just to see the chequered flag at Albert Park.

"I think we head down under having had a solid winter - we know we have a lot of work left to do, but we have a good basis from which to go forward. We know where the car is strong, and where there's more work left to do - and we're addressing those areas. But I've said it all along: the car is driveable and predictable; it does what we ask it to do, which is a positive," he said.

"Personally, it'll be important for me to finish these early races in order to get some good mileage under my belt. Even though I've had a good winter, I'm under no illusions that I'm a still a rookie, and that I'm giving something away to the guys with more experience. However, the new regulations have made it more of an even playing field, so a couple of good practice sessions and some race distances will help enormously in getting me fully race-ready.

"There's no substitute for being in the car - and there's so much for me to still learn about driving a Formula 1 as close to the limit as possible while still focusing on tyre management, fuel-saving and the controls and switches we operate from the cockpit.

"But I'm really looking forward to being in a race - that's why I'm here, and I can't wait to get started."

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