In less than two weeks, Fabio Scherer will finally start the season with the official WEC testing duties in Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium (26/27 April). To make…/Read
Swiss racing driver Fabio Scherer is relishing the prospect of competing on one of the world’s most exciting street circuits as the FIA Formula 3 European Championship visits the Norisring in Germany this weekend.
The legendary track uses the streets of Nuremberg in northern Bavaria and is different to other temporary city centre tracks because it has a fast and relatively simple layout, with speeds on the long straights touching 255km/h and only four corners that require heavy braking.
However, some sections of the 2.3km track are very bumpy, while unyielding stone walls and crash barriers lie in wait to punish any driver who slightly misjudges a braking point.
In short, it is exactly the kind of challenge that Fabio says he enjoys most: “Although I haven’t raced at the Norisring before, I have experience of the circuit from the racing simulator. It is a very short track and an old-school classic. With more than 100,000 people watching the races, it will be a good place to get some strong results!”
The 19-year-old says the first target for the weekend will be to qualify inside the top ten on the grid. The short lap means qualifying times are likely to be very close.
“It is a challenging track where you need to have a good feeling for your car,” said Fabio. “Normally, I’m quite strong in those conditions. The track has only four corners and to set a competitive lap time you need to drive each of them perfectly.
“If you can qualify inside the top ten you really have a chance to race hard, unlike at some other tracks where overtaking is limited.”
The need for a high top speed on the Norisring’s long straights means Fabio’s Volkswagen-engined Dallara will be set-up in a low-downforce configuration. This in turn increases overtaking opportunities during the races because competitors are able to drive in each other’s slipstreams on the straights and try to slingshot past under braking for the corners.
“In the races you can get some good results if you are quite aggressive and late on the brakes and brave. That’s the way I like to race,” Fabio explained. “Also, you can apply pressure to push another driver into making a mistake, which can be useful.
“The low downforce makes it interesting. I watched some videos of previous Formula 3 races at Norisring and there was quite a lot of sideways driving. Usually I’m quite strong when I have to drive the car that way.
“You can also push the tyres quite hard at the Norisring rather than have to drive carefully to preserve them until the end of the race. That’s never a bad thing.”
Fabio’s weekend in his Motopark-entered car will begin with free practice and qualifying on Friday, 22 June ahead of the opening race and a further qualifying session the following day. Two more races will follow on Sunday 24 June.