Antonio Giovinazzi heavily studied videos of race starts from previous seasons to master his technique, and it sure paid off in 2020.
With the current generation of Formula 1 cars known for being difficult to follow and not very helpful for overtaking, qualifying as high up the grid as possible as vital.
And for a team like Alfa Romeo who spent 2020 battling at the back with Williams and Haas, often missing out on Q2, race starts then became absolutely crucial.
And that is an area where Giovinazzi shined, consistently gaining places on the opening lap throughout the season. And that certainly wasn’t achieved by accident.
“After qualifying of course we do the debriefing [where] you watch maybe the lap you did [and see] maybe where you lost something. But after that moment I’m just focused 100% for the race and for the start especially,” Giovinazzi told Autosport.
“Because with the cars that we have and then with the difficulty to follow and overtake, I think if you have a good start and good first lap and you gain positions there, then the race will be much more easy.
“I focus a lot on watching [videos] from the past year – the starts and onboards and also some videos that we have from last years.
“And this works quite well I would say. I’m really happy with the work that I did in this season and will continue to work like this for the future.”
Missing it already, aren’t you?#F1 #Formula1 #AlfaRomeoRacing #AG99? pic.twitter.com/FJfhpp4dRn
— Antonio Giovinazzi (@Anto_Giovinazzi) December 20, 2020
This approach though proved rather challenging at the unscheduled venues.
With several events falling foul of the pandemic, Formula 1 welcomed famous names of its past like the Nurburgring, Istanbul Park and Imola back onto the calendar for 2020. Portimao, Mugello and Bahrain’s ‘Outer Circuit’ were also put into Formula 1 action for the first time.
To prepare for these locations Giovinazzi watched any videos he could find, often starts from junior formulas such as Formula 4.
“When we have new tracks, of course I’m trying to watch maybe from the other categories – Formula 4 – every video that I can find the start [at] that track,” he continued.
“I try to learn something from the videos, but yeah, it was not easy. I would say it’s much more easy to have [a known quantity] like a Bahrain that you raced before and there’s so many starts that you can watch online and what can happen in each corner.
“This is much more easy, but it was also quite nice to see in Imola watching the Formula 4 starts and then I had again a good first lap over there, so it was good.”
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