Hartley has to come up to speed quickly

Brendon Hartley
Brendon Hartley

With such a short time before his F1 baptism of fire in Austin, Brendon Hartley is doing his best to get up to speed with his new Toro Rosso mount.

Sophisticated racing cars are nothing new for the Porsche works driver, but an F1 drive stills needs a good amount of knowledge and preparation.

"I’ve just been handed the driver manual which is about 50 pages long," Hartley told Newstalk ZB.

"I’ve got to learn all the procedures of the car, the steering wheel. I have four hours of testing before qualifying and I’d like to think that will be enough to get up to speed."

The 27-year-old had the opportunity to virtually sample the team's 2017 STR12 in the Faenza-based outfit's simulator.

But he'll also rely on his vast WEC skills and expertise with Porsche to get on top of things as quickly as possible.

"In terms of pure lap time, it’s not that much [different]," he said.

"It’s seven or eight seconds per lap. It’s not that much, especially on race pace. The cars I’ve been driving are extremely quick.

"I guess it’s partly the reason why they’ve looked to put me in the car, and also the fact the cars are so technologically advanced, hybrid technology, all that stuff. That’s similar.

"It is going to be a big step," he added.

"It’s been six or seven years since I sat in a single-seater.

"But I try to take a simple view of it: It’s a race car, it’s got four wheels, the physics behind what a driver has to do to go quickly around a racing circuit doesn’t change too much."

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