Liam Lawson is thrilled to have the opportunity to live out a boyhood dream when he gets to race around Monaco in round two of the FIA Formula 2 championship.
Monaco is heralded as the world’s most extravagant and celebrated race track, and Lawson will make his debut on the street circuit this year.
It is a challenge the young Kiwi is “super excited” to tackle, saying it has been his dream to race on the circuit since he started his racing journey.
“Monaco is something I can’t believe that I am going to get to drive on in a couple of months’ time,” Lawson said.
“It has been an absolute dream of mine since I was a kid.”
The circuit is notoriously difficult to master, given the narrow wall confinements and the high speeds an F2 car can carry through corners.
Overtaking is a rarity, and the focus of the weekend centres around qualifying.
As a Monaco rookie, Lawson accepts that the weekend will be demanding. He says it will be tricky to replicate the success he had at Bahrain.
“It is going to be really, really tough for the guys that haven’t been there before,” he said.
“But for guys that have been there in past championships, that is a massive advantage because a street circuit like that is going to take a lot of time.
“On a normal track, you can get away with little mistakes. But around Monaco, if you lock-up and make a mistake, then you are in the wall.
“We are normally one of the first cars on the track as well. When you start on a street circuit, there is really low grip because nobody ever races around it but road cars.
“But I am super excited to have the opportunity to drive around such an awesome track like that.”
Adding to the weekend’s challenge, Lawson will have to deal with qualifying for the feature race just hours after free practice.
The changes are part of a revamp to the F2 round format, which also sees an extra sprint race added to the weekend.
Lawson praised the format changes, believing more race time is beneficial for a rookie like himself.
“For me, it’s more races and more time in the car on a race weekend, so I like it.
“One of the things about racing on a Formula 1 weekend is that then there’s limited track time, so it’s awesome to get more time racing. The way we’ve done the format makes it interesting.
“This weekend it served us well, but I think it will be quite interesting to see over the year as people try to get really smart with it.”
Fellow F2 Kiwi Marcus Armstrong will also be making his Monaco debut after last year’s race was cancelled.
The Monaco Grand Prix will be held on May 20-22.