Fernando Rees Interview And Q&A
It’s not everyday you get to interview a driver on this scale so here is my Fernando Rees Interview and Q&A..
To say I still can’t quite believe it, is very much the truth. Its all such a blur now as to how it even came about, a completely random sequence of events that led to the opportunity presenting itself to request it and so I took it with both hands and was completely shocked when Fernando replied with “Lets do this”.
I’ll be as honest as is possible, my knowledge on endurance racing is limited as its a recent discovery for me and there are 2 other members of ThePitCrew who I would see as the Crew experts, therefore far more qualified than I.
However, I was determined to make the most of this opportunity and decided to override the temptation to ask lots about WEC and Le Mans and to grasp the chance to find out more about Fernando Rees, the man aswell as the racing driver.
Coming from being a racing fan to being the wife of an F1 team member and then onto mixing with fans, I am very well aware of what a fan wants, we want that little bit more, we want to feel our favourite driver is more our like our friend, we want a reply to a tweet, we want time for an autograph and a photo at a circuit, we just want a little bit more than we are usually allowed to have and this is an area that Fernando excels.
When it comes to Fernando on twitter, the biggest thing that people talk about is his fan interaction, “oh, he’s such a nice man”, “he always replies to fans”, “he’s the best with the fans, other drivers could learn from him”
So I set about how instead of ‘Recent Spa 6Hr winner Fernando Rees interview’, I could make this a little different and an interview for the fans and not the usual set of questions, so I really hope you enjoy getting to know Fernando a bit more, I certainly feel that I have learnt a lot and he now has a fan for life in me.
I hope this resonates as much as it does with me, as I now understand WHY Fernando gives as much time to his fans as he does, he has never forgotten where he came from and his struggles to even be able to drive, he hasn’t turned into a diva, he hasn’t surrounded himself in “Yes” people, he has stayed true to himself and appreciates everything, a genuinely nice man and I am proud to be able to share this with you all.
Q) Did/ do you have any aspirations towards F1 ?
A) Yes, but when I was very young. Coming from Brazil, we don’t know much else about racing because it’s all about F1. But I changed my mind early on, while racing in Europe in F. Renault and Formula 3, as I figured out that the cards for my generation were already marked.
Q) What do you think about Formula E & is there anything you feel other formulas can learn from it?
A) I like it. It’s interesting, different. I don’t think it belongs to what we know as “racing” – to me it kind of stands on its own, something new. But entertaining for sure, and promising. But being different than anything else, I don’t think it can be used much as an example of success or failure for other small formula categories.
Q) You will be racing in LeMans in June, can you tell me why it is is so key to make sure you’re always checking your mirrors?
A) Well, you check your mirrors all the time, but during the night it has little use because we can’t really see much. The LMP1 lights are just too bright, it blinds us, and makes our mirrors reflect a completely white light. You can’t judge whether they’re 500 m or 50 m behind. But in general, the mirror raises your space awareness, and in GT cars you must be ready to protect yourself from incoming cars all the time.
Q) Is it difficult to race at dusk or night doing 160 MPH+?
A) Yeah, it is very difficult. But it’s more difficult when you leave the environment of the garage and go straight to the night. If the night comes while you’re already driving, it’s much easier because your eyes adapt step by step with it. But for sure, it’s not easy, and it’s one of the big challenges of endurance racing.
Q) In 3 words describe your racing style?
A) Smart, precise, aware.
Q) Do you have a strict training and preparation programme to assist in endurance racing?
A) Yes, fitness and nutrition plus a special preparation before entering the race car. Everything must work together. Mind and body must be in tune, and in tune with the mindfulness required by racing well.
Q) Tell me the most special thing to you within racing, that even on the worst day makes you feel fortunate to be able to race at all?
A) To know what an achievement it is just being able to do it at all, especially coming from a family which couldn’t just pay my way up each year, you know? So yeah, to feel fortunate that since I started, back when I was 8, so many kids and guys raced against me and had to stop for this or that reason, while I managed to continue.
Q) Are there some other sports you’re interested in or participate in?
A) I love running. It gives me a similar feeling as when I’m inside the race car. You know, on your own, getting to experiment and understand your own mind in a level of focus that few other things require.
Q) You have been invited to a one off race that means something to you, what car would you like, at which circuit and who’s your team mate (past or present is allowed) and why?
A) Very difficult question. It never crossed my mind, to be honest. I would love to drive the Aston Martin DBR9 GT1 some more, in a circuit like Spa-Francorchamps, and I’m quite pleased with the way things work with my current team mates.
Q) You’re going to dinner with up to 4 people who’ve influenced you, who would you bring along?
A) I would like a dinner just with Ayrton Senna to discuss some thoughts about racing – not race cars, but what motivates us to race, why we risk doing it, etc.
Q) What’s are you listening to most on your ipod currently?
Q) X-Box or Playstation?
Q) What’s your favourite Sim game to play?
A) GT6 and rFactor Pro.
Q) Describe Fernando the man in 3 words?
A) Calm, humble, disciplined.
Q) You are going to Periscope from a place in the world that is most like you, where in the world are we?
A) A calm beach in Northeastern Brazil. Very few people around. Birds and other animals roaming free. Sounds of waves. Sun up in the blue sky – sunrays touching my face.
Thankyou so much to Fernando for letting me ask him some questions, I hope you feel like you know him a little more now, I really hope you enjoyed my Fernando Rees interview.
Who else would you like to see me interview?..