Volkswagen Racing Cup driver Jessica Hawkins got her first taste of Formula 1 machinery when she undertook high-speed demonstration laps at the Silverstone Classic in a 2011 Sauber.
The 23-year-old was running in the ‘Legends of Formula One’ display as the circuit celebrates 70 years since it first hosted the British Grand Prix.
It was the first time she had driven a single-seater since competing in British Formula 4 and the MRF Challenge back in 2015.
“This is wicked, it’s just completely blown my mind,” she told Motorsport
News. “The most impressive thing is the braking, I’ve never felt anything else like that. Crazy!”
Owned by Heritage F1, who surprised Billy Monger with an F1 test at Rockingham last month, the Sauber C30 was without a driver when European Le Mans Series champion Oli Webb was unavailable. But Hawkins relished her late call up.
“One of my friends knows the guys here [at Heritage F1] but he didn’t have a race licence. So he said, ‘I can’t do it but I know someone who can’.
“They didn’t say so, but I’m sure they checked out what I’ve done before and came back and told me I could do it.”