15 April 2013
Chilton an investment, not a pay driver
“It's nothing new, and there are lots of schemes that have been tried over the years,” the Yorkshireman told journalists after a mixed day for Chilton in Friday practice, “I think Justin Wilson was the last one that I know that had a similar scheme, and sometimes it's required to find a way into F1. If it becomes self-funding, then it's a great idea.”
Having started strongly when he all but matched the times set by impressive team-mate Jules Bianchi in opening practice, Chilton's Shanghai weekend suffered a setback with his car stopping twice in the second session. He bounced back on Saturday, however, to again out-qualifying both Caterhams in the 'third division' battle at the back of the grid.
"It would be easy to focus on the negatives but, given the challenges we've faced on my side of the garage, I'm more encouraged by what we have achieved when you consider how little running we've had,” the Briton reflected, "The target was to stay the right side of the Caterhams, which I did, despite only having the one run of three laps."
In the race, Chilton battled to 17th in a 56-lap encounter again featuring little in the way of attrition, and continued to focus on the positive.
“I'm pleased that we ended our time in China on a stronger note after a few challenges along the way,” he noted, “I didn't get the best start, but things improved through the race and that was reflected in my lap time relative to [Giedo] van der Garde.
“Looking at what has been a good race and also the signs from free practice earlier in the weekend, it's all starting to come together. Importantly, we brought home another good combined result for the team and demonstrated that we can understand and respond to issues quickly to achieve the right outcome.
“I hope that we will have an easier time of it in Bahrain so I can make another positive start to the weekend and then have the opportunity to maintain that momentum."
Max Chilton may have some way to go before he is able to repay those investors, but it would appear that his stock can only rise.
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