Hartley: 'Pressure in F1 forces me to remember why I'm doing it'

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Brendon Hartley feels the sometimes frantic pressure associated with being a Formula 1 driver means he needs to remind himself why he enjoys his job.

The 28-year-old Kiwi came into Grand Prix racing through the back door following a successful few years as a Porsche LMP1 driver.

Circumstances associated with Toro Rosso's game of musical chairs at the end of 2017 offered Hartley a big break with the junior bull outfit.

But the change of environment has delivered new challenge and more pressure, and the need for him to be reminded of the essence of what he does.

"There's a little bit more media on a week-to-week basis in Formula 1, so you feel like there's a few more eyes on you," Hartley told Motorsport.com.

"In some ways, it can feel like maybe more pressure in Formula 1 because you're one driver rather than three.

"I'm enjoying it. I do have to remind myself why I'm doing it and why I'm enjoying it, [because] there's a lot of pressure involved," he added.

"It's very easy to get caught up in all the pressures that are involved in Formula 1 and to lose sight in the absolute pleasure and why we are all here.

"I think that's no different to any other sport when it becomes truly professional."

Brendon Hartley (NZL) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR13

Hartley will be racing for the very first time in Montreal next weekend, but a recent aero update for Toro Rosso's STR13 coupled with a Honda engine upgrade provides him with an optimistic outlook.

"I’ve never been to Canada before and I’ve been told by every driver that this track is one of the highlights on the calendar, so from one highlight on the calendar to another - from Monaco to Montreal," he said.

"And it’s also partly a street track, which I love, although this is a lot faster than Monaco and the barriers aren’t as close, apart from in a couple of places.

"The aero update introduced at the last race looks to be working well and the team has been working very hard behind the scenes to bring all the performance we can get, so I’m optimistic about the coming weekend."

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