Why Zhou is expecting ‘goosebumps’ when F1 finally returns to China

Why Zhou is expecting ‘goosebumps’ when F1 finally returns to China

Zhou Guanyu has described how he is expecting “goosebumps” when driving in Friday practice when Formula 1 returns to China.

There has not been a Grand Prix held at the Shanghai International Circuit since 2019 due to the out-break of COVID-19, with the ’20 race the first to be cancelled.

Subsequent races have been cancelled due to travel restrictions imposed by the Chinese government, but F1 is finally to return in April with a Sprint race also set to be held, the first of six across the season.

Zhou is the first ever Chinese driver to race in F1, and got his first taste of Grand Prix racing at the inaugural race in 2004, won by Rubens Barrichello for Ferrari, and with China being a key market, the Stake Sauber driver is eager to race in front of his home fans for the first time.

Zhou on Chinese GP return

“I think it is going to be goosebumps when we get to that weekend, starting with the first session on Friday,” Zhou exclusively tells RacingNews365.

“It is a place with [so many] memories for me, because as a kid, I remember the first event I attended was 2004 when we had the first Grand Prix in China.

“There was nothing there and even the tickets were given away by the car companies, and I was lucky and got one.

“I was in the grandstand just before Turn 1, actually watching and having this [feeling of]: ‘I really want to be a driver like that one day’ and try to understand what is the best way to start my own career by karting.

“It is such a memory place, and knowing that in my first season in Formula 1, there wasn’t a Chinese Grand Prix, firstly because I never imagined I would be in Formula 1 one day, and it was the thing I was looking forward to the most.

“But it hasn’t happened for [five] years, so I had to fight for it to make sure I had a home race, and it is finally coming.

“It is really exciting to understand how [many fans] are going to be there, and the crowd is going to be excited, it is going to be a very exciting event.”


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