Photo: Jakob Ebrey Photography/Racing Steps Foundation
Young Brit Formula Renault ace experienced a sizeable increase in power this week when he drove a 2011 McLaren at Silverstone as the main prize for winning last year’s McLaren Autosport BRDC Award…
Oliver Rowland had an early taste of Formula 1 machinery on Wednesday at Silverstone when he sampled a McLaren MP4-26 as raced in the 2011 season. The 20-year-old received the opportunity after winning the 2011 McLaren Autosport BRDC Award.
After finishing runner-up in Formula Renault UK last year, Racing Steps Foundation-backed driver Rowland moved on to the highly-competitive Eurocup this year, with victory in the season finale in Barcelona giving him third place in the final standings. In line with previous RSF beneficiaries, a step up to British F3 with Carlin is probably on the cards for 2013.
“It was unbelievable,” Rowland is quoted as saying by Autosport. “I have even more respect for the F1 guys now. It wasn’t physically as difficult as I thought it might be – it’s the power. When I put my foot down coming out the pits it was like ‘oh my god.'”
Rowland’s drive took place during the assessments for the 2012 Award at Silverstone. Jake Dennis, Josh Hill, Jordan King, Jack Hawksworth, Melville McKee and Josh Webster are battling to receive the gong at the Autosport Awards bash in December.