Pato O'Ward

F1Weekly: Pato O’Ward the new “Speedy Gonzalez”

Pato O'Ward

Pato O’Ward. The new “Speedy Gonzalez” celebrates success in America with Tequila! McLaren Formula 1 team’s reserve driver is the subject of this week’s interview on F1Weekly podcast.

In a few short years, Pato has established himself as a major force on the American racing landscape. The conversation took place at Daytona International Speedway, where he was racing for Zak Brown and Richard Dean-owned United Autosports.

He said, “I love starting my year with the Rolex 24 Hour. It’s an amazing event. Every time I come there are more fans around.”

The American IMSA sports car racing scene, like WEC, is enjoying a surge in popularity. In the top GTP class, there are factory entries from BMW, Cadillac, Honda (in the form of their luxury brand, Acura) and Porsche.

In 2018, in his rookie season, Pato dominated Indy Lights championship, the F2 of US open-wheel racing, winning nine of 17 races.

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“If I have learned one thing in the last few years is you cannot plan anything, things are going to come to you in massive speed, or will take time. All you have to do is be ready for it,” said the 24-year-old from Monterrey, Mexico.

Pato is charting his own career, and like Sebastian Vettel does not employ a manager.

When asked if the challenges of oval racing led to hiring a coach, he said, “Coaches in racing are useless, sometimes it’s okay to have a second pair of eyes to help you and guide you through their experiences in the past.

“When you are at the top level and someone is still trying to tell you how to drive the race car, well, maybe you should look into doing something else.”

Patricio O’Ward was born on 6 May 1999. He pilots Chevrolet-powered IndyCar for Zak Brown-owned Arrow McLaren team.

Have a listen below or on F1Weekly podcast site