Young Driver AMR : Nygaard's Dual GT1 and GT3 Campaign

Friday, March 19, 2010

Christoffer Nygaard has a busy season ahead of him when, uniquely, he will race a Young Drivers AMR Aston Martin DBR9 in the FIA GT1 World Championship and also compete for his second year in the FIA GT3 European Championship in the Fischer Racing Ford GT. In 2009 the Dane, who will celebrate his 24th birthday on the 24th March, won in his debut GT3 season with victory at Oschersleben in Germany, adding two further podiums to finish 5th overall with Florian Grüber at the end of the year.

2010 will see Christoffer partnering Stefan Mücke in the GT1 World Championship, while in GT3 he will be partnered with reigning Finnish GT3 Champion, and 2008 Finish Touring Car Champion, Mikko Eskelinen.
Christoffer takes time out from his busy schedule to answer a few questions about his high profile dual GT campaign.

Q: Why are you competing in GT1 and GT3 this season?

“It came about because I was asked by Fischer Racing if I wanted to do both championships because they thought it would be good for me to learn the tracks and give me a lot of track time. Of course it is in two different cars but I felt it was important to get more track time and get used to the tracks.”

Q: Have you found it difficult to change from the GT3 Ford to the GT1 Aston Martin?

“Power wise the GT3 isn't that far away from the new GT1 spec but where there is a big difference is in the aerodynamics, the Aston Martin has much more grip. There is also a big difference in the balance with the Ford being mid engined while the engine is in the front in the Aston, so they are quite different in that respect. So I need to get some more laps to get it all done but I know we are going to get there.”

Q: There are going to be a lot of races this year and at the events where GT1 and GT3 are running together are you going to have to put a note on the dash to remind you which car and which race you are in?

“I don't think I will need to put a note in the car but it's certainly going to take a lot mentally to do these two championships. For example with the braking points, the carbon brakes in GT1 you can brake a lot later, so for things like this I am going to have to work hard mentally. Both championships are going to be very competitive and I am confident that we can do well in both.”

Q: Do you think racing in GT3 last season has prepared you for the FIA GT1 World Championship?

“It is still too early to say yet because we haven't seen the strength of the GT1 yet, which we wont see until Abu Dhabi. But, for sure, GT3 gave me some really good experience last year, which was my first season in GT after Touring Cars. This is a big step for me to go into the GT1 World Championship but I'm a quick learner, I think I showed that last season, and this will be the same in GT1.”

Q: How are you getting on with your new team mate Stefan Mücke?

“He is a really good guy to work with and really, really fast, so I have a lot to live up to. He is German and this will be my fourth year with a German team, so I know the language, which helps a lot. Stefan doesn't want to hide anything, which is good thing to have in a team mate. He wants to make me quicker to improve his chances, so I think this will be a good pairing and we should be strong.”

Q: You were a race winner in your debut GT3 season in 2009, so what are your goals for GT3 and GT1 this year?

“Like last year there is going to be a lot of competition in GT3 this season, so I definitely want to finish on the podium and we will try to be consistently in the points. In GT1 we want to win, of course, as I know we have a really good car and I have a very quick partner, but again I think it is a little bit early to say where we are going to be as a lot depends on how the balance turns out. For sure I want to be World Champion, which is the biggest goal you can aim for, but the competition is going to be strong with 23 other cars doing the same. We will be trying our best to achieve this goal.”
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