Roldan Rodriguez is hoping his brief experience of the new Valencia street circuit will aid his cause when the GP2 Series visits there for the latest round of the championship this weekend.
With four Spanish drivers racing at Valencia this weekend, the GP2 Series is likely to be almost as anticipated as the main attraction, but with only one race having ever been held around the city's port, there will be much to discover in the 30-minute free practice session before qualifying.
Luckily for Rodriguez, he was one of a handful of drivers to take part in the dress rehearsal that was the Spanish Formula 3 and Spanish GT Open weekend in July, giving him an early insight into the twists and turns of the circuit.
Even so, he is expecting the short practice session to be frantic as the 26-car field battles for room on the circuit ahead of what will probably be a crucial qualifying session.
“You have to see the circuit map and try to see more or less the difficult corners and easier corners, but then until you are racing there you really don't know, for example, where the braking points are.
“I am lucky to have raced a GT2 Ferrari 430GT there a few weeks ago, so I now have a basic understanding of the circuit. However, for my first visit there with GP2 I think it will be very important to do the full 30 minutes of free practice, not to lose any time and to do as many laps as we can.”
Street circuits have been kind to Rodriguez this year, the FMS International driver scoring fourth and sixth place finishes at Monaco. However, while further success has been limited since, the former Minardi Piquet driver is enjoying his second season.
“I always enjoy it when I am racing but I enjoy it more when the results come. Until now we have struggled a little bit with the results, but I think that in the future we can get more points.”