Christopher Zanella Q&A Despite being a newcomer to the 2011 FIA Formula Two Championship, Swiss Christopher Zanella has already won more races than any other driver and currently leads the championship standings. During the opening rounds at Silverstone, the 21-year-old secured his maiden F2 podium - from 10th on the grid - and followed that up with a commanding weekend in Magny-Cours with his first pole and back-to-back wins. What's even more impressive though, is that he's done all this whilst juggling a full-time college course. Formulatwo.com talks to the rookie about his impressive season so far.
This year is your first season in F2, did you think you would be leading the series at this stage? I always hoped I would do well but I never thought it would be this good. I never expected to be leading the series at this early stage but I'm very happy that I am. I thought I would have to fight in more races to get to this point so this is really good for me.
You haven't won a race since 2008 in the Swiss Formula Renault Championship, so how did it feel to secure your first F2 victory? To win the race was a great feeling for me and unbelievable given I had a really bad start. I dropped down to fourth and tried to stay with the others and then tried to close the gap lap-by-lap. Then I overtook one after the other and that was really good. It was a hard race and especially at the end when you're alone and you start to have some thoughts and that's very dangerous!
How did it feel to then be on pole and go on to win the second race in Magny-Cours? I was actually a bit surprised to be on pole for race two as the lap where I used my overboost wasn't perfect. It was a great feeling though especially after securing my first win, everything just seemed to be going right.
You've driven both Formula Renault and F2 single-seaters before, how does the 500bhp F2 car compare to these? The F2 car is certainly more technical compared to anything else I've driven such as the F3 car. It's very different but I enjoy driving it a lot, particularly the increased power!
You're competing in F2 whilst also still undertaking your college work. How hard is it juggling the two? It's very hard doing the two. I study Mechanical Engineering at college and have two months left on the course. It's really hard to train and concentrate on F2 and also study for my exams. After winning twice at Magny-Cours I had to drive home straight away after the race to get some sleep ready for college the next day!
And finally, F2 travels to Spa soon for the next rounds of the series. Are you looking forward to this track and do you think you can win there as well? Yeah hopefully. I'm really looking forward to Spa, it's a great track. I raced there in 2008 so I know it well. It's really fast which I love!
The next rounds of the 2011 FIA Formula Two Championship take place in Spa on 24-26 June. For more information on Christopher Zanella click here
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