Esteban Ocon will be racing in his first Hungarian Grand Prix this weekend - but he's already described the venue as his favourite circuit of the year!
The French driver took part in FP1 in 2016 as a test and development driver with Renault. But he knows the Hungaroring well from racing there in junior formulae.
“I love Budapest and the Hungaroring," he said. "It’s my favourite track of the year. I had a special weekend there when I was racing in Formula Three with two wins and a second place. And a double podium in GP3!
"It’s just a track that’s very satisfying to drive," he added when asked why he felt the track was so special.
"When you get into the rhythm it feels great because you can really lean on the car and attack the kerbs. It’s a circuit that suits me as a driver and my driving style."
"Esteban tells me that it’s his favourite track of the year because he loves the chicanes," said team principal Vijay Mallya.
"Budapest should be another competitive track for us," he continued. "It’s never been a circuit where we’ve had much luck in recent years so hopefully things will change this year.
"We will be running Alfonso Celis in the car during free practice on Friday," he said. "And we have two promising youngsters testing with us in the days after the race with Nikita Mazepin and Lucas Auer in the car.
"After that, there’s a well-earned rest for the entire team. We will do our best to sign off the first half of the year with a strong result.”
Ocon certainly has plans to make the most of his time off over the summer.
“I’m looking forward to the break and the chance to recharge my batteries," said the 20-year-old. "It’s been such a busy season and I’m ready to take a few weeks to catch my breath.
"I have to say I’m very happy with how things have gone since I joined the team," he added. "I feel stronger with every race and I think there is even more potential in the second half of the year.
"My objective is still to try and get a podium, but the priority is to keep picking up the points in every race. That’s what we need as a team. We just need to keep being consistent.”