Joining Hitech Grand Prix as the youngest driver on the grid, Jak Crawford’s debut season was always set to be one of learning.
Taking one podium and finishing the season on 45 points, he finished the season with plenty of lessons in the bank, even if he would have liked a few more points on the board.
The American penned a guest column following the conclusion of the campaign and gave us his hot takes from the year.
THE BEST BITS – PLENTY OF POTENTIAL
“I think the overall speed was really good at times and I showed lots of potential throughout the year and in races, but in the end, I was never on top and there wasn't much to be excited about.
“As a team, we were expecting much better results than we had, but if I had to choose something, then I would say that it was the speed and the potential that I showed throughout the year, which was promising.”
AREAS OF IMPROVEMENT – MISTAKES MADE
“The main issue for me was the mistakes that I was making and the consequences that it had. There were a few times in Qualifying sessions where I was looking good for a top five result, but then I would make a mistake and end up out of the top 12.
“In the races too, where bad moves cost me front wing damage, or a stall at the race start. These mistakes were caused by me over pushing the limits and wanting too much from the car and myself. We struggled with the car this year and I didn't accept that early enough, I usually went over the limits of the car, causing these mistakes.”
WHAT SURPRISED ME – THE TYRES
“How sensitive the tyres are. I came straight from F4 where you can push 100% every lap, every race, and in Qualifying, where you can do seven push laps in a row. In F3, it is much different, it is super important in Qualifying to be ready and switched on when the first push lap comes.
“You can’t push the tyres too much at the start and then throughout the race you are always trying to manage the tyres.”
WHERE I CAN IMPROVE – TYRE MANAGEMENT
“I think everything can be improved, but if I had to point out a few things, then I would say managing the tyres better in races and putting together cleaner, faster laps in Qualifying without the mistakes. These are the areas where I think I really need to improve to make myself a top driver.”
WHAT I LEARNED – HOW TO CALM MYSELF DOWN
“The biggest thing I learned all year was how to calm myself down and not want too much. At the beginning of the year, I wanted the results so badly and it was actually hurting my performance. After the summer break, I changed that mindset and good results and points started to come.”
WHAT’S NEXT – SPENDING THE BREAK AT HOME
“I will spend my time back home in the U.S., spending time at home and training for next season. During December I will do some kart racing as well in Las Vegas. Otherwise, no plans, just chilling at home with my family.”