On the eve of the 2010 F3 Euroseries curtain-raiser at Paul Ricard this weekend and buoyed by an encouraging debut year in the championship in 2009, rising young British star Alexander Sims is confident in his chances of vying for title glory with ART Grand Prix – the team that he describes as 'the best place to be'.
Sims finished an excellent fourth outright with Mücke Motorsport last season, four spots ahead of more experienced team-mate and compatriot Sam Bird, and just missing out on top rookie honours to new team-mate Valtteri Bottas.
Along the way there was a reverse-grid victory at the Nürburgring and a clutch of four second places – and if there were some inevitable learning pains into the bargain for good measure, the campaign nonetheless paved the way for what the 22-year-old hopes will be a successful bid for glory twelve months on.
“I'm quite happy with the way the year went,” he told Crash.net Radio
. “It was a little bit difficult to start with – the first few rounds were a little bit slow and I made too many mistakes, but I learned from that and got on with it and ended up with a pretty decent result.
“I got two second places in the main race, though I would have liked a win. Still, the win in the reverse-grid race at the Nürburgring was fantastic – we pulled away and dominated, so it wasn't a lucky win. Generally, the whole year was good; I learned about stuff and then got on and did the job in the second half of the season.”
Admitting that it is tricky to pinpoint one particular area of progress – “It's just little bits, honing your skills to make sure you're the overall driver,” he explains – Sims knows that in ART he is now with a team of impressive pedigree and one that should things go well, might just provide a route even closer to his ultimate goal of F1.
“I'm very, very impressed with the way they work so I'm looking forward to it,” underlined the former McLaren/Autosport BRDC Young Driver of the Year
. “I think it's the best place for me to be in the Euroseries to win the championship. That will be my main focus, and I think there should definitely be a possibility of doing that – and then in 2011, naturally we'd be in a decent place with ART hopefully to progress with them into GP2.”TO LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW IN FULL: CLICK HERE