Opel is promoting its brand through popular names in auto industry. The latest association is with Rob Wilson, one of the most important players in Formula 1 racing that you have never heard of.
More exactly, Rob is teaching current Formula 1 pilots to shave seconds on every tour. Currently, at least 12 drivers on the current grid are rob apprentices and they all learn how to better manage their times on the track with the help of a standard Vauhall Astra.
As improbable as it seems, Rob’s Astra Sports Tourer – along with a GTC and Insignia Sports Tourer – are perfect for his training sessions, which also benefit drivers from Indycar, DTM and even WRC. For those who find it hard to believe, Rob explians: ”The Vauxhalls will do everything that an F1 car does dynamically, just at a far lower speed. This allows me to explain the physics behind what the car is doing out on the track in real time, which I’d never manage in a performance car. The other advantage is that the driver’s engineer can ride along too, and this is crucial since a change in driving technique could result in a different set-up for the race car”.
The focus is on cornering and braking weights, and how to minimise both by adopting sometimes counter-intuitive cornering lines; even gear-changing comes under the microscope: ”Many top drivers have never heel-and-toed during down-changes, because they’ve never needed to. But the discipline makes them appreciate the importance of smoothness and how it can have a positive effect on the balance of the car into corners,” said Rob.