Max Chilton admits he is nervous about making his F1 debut with Marussia

Brit says biggest challenge will be learning steering wheel controls

By William Esler.   Last Updated: 13/03/13 10:49am

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Marussia's rookie Max Chilton speaks to Craig Slater as he prepares for his first grand prix.

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Marussia's Max Chilton admits he is nervous ahead of making his Formula 1 debut at this weekend's Australian Grand Prix.

The 21-year-old will be the fourth British driver on the grid this season after graduating from the GP2 Series, in which he finished fourth in 2012.

Having spent the previous three seasons on the F1 undercard, Chilton will know most of the circuits well and thus feels the biggest challenge during his rookie year will be the additional steering wheel controls he now needs to master at 200mph.

"The main difference between GP2 and F1 is how much stuff you have to do on the wheel - things like changing the dif (differential), the KERS, the DRS - there is so much going on and you are also doing much quicker speeds," the Marussia driver to Sky Sports News.

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"So concentration levels are the biggest difference and we worked on that over the winter and I have had plenty of time in the car so I am now ready to go.

"Usually in a category you have raced in it is fine, but this is my first F1 race and I think it would be weird if I didn't have nerves. You need nerves sometimes to egg yourself on so I will be there and enjoy every moment of it and give it my best."

Marussia are unlikely to be challenging for victory - indeed even a top-ten finish would be an achievement - and rather than aiming for a position, Chilton is just setting his sights on reaching the chequered flag.

"You have got to finish - if you are not in it you can't win it - so you just have to stay on the track and do the best you can for the team," he added.

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