David, you are the first Rookie champion in the new ADAC Formula 4. What does this success mean to you?
I´m very pleased with my overall victory in the Rookie championship. This is a great achievement for me and my team, kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport. The guys did a super job throughout the year, and I´ve learned lots of new stuff. My maiden win and three podium finishes at the season finale in Hockenheim was a great way to round off the season. There were also a couple of lows during my first year in formula racing, but the rookie title was well deserved in the end.
Your win is all the more special, because you did not take part in all the races...
Correct. Unfortunately, I had to sit on the sidelines as all the others drove their first races in the ADAC Formula 4 at the season opener in Oschersleben. The reason why – if I can put it like this – I was born three days too late. I didn´t celebrate my 15th birthday until the Monday after the race weekend. According to the regulations, I was too young to line up at the age of 14. The three missed races possibly cost me points, so I had to catch up.
You did that most impressively in your series debut on the second race weekend at the Red Bull Ring in Austria.
True, I had a really superb weekend at Spielberg. Finishing on the podium at my first attempt was obviously great. I was even more intent on putting my foot down after missing the season opener. It makes me feel really proud to ultimately win the rookie title as the youngest of all the drivers on the grid. Honestly, though, my focus was not on winning the rookie classification. I tried to go to the limit in every race and make as few mistakes as possible. I finished fifth overall in the championship. I also regard that as a great success.
Do you think that winning the Rookie championship will help you further?
I think so. At the end of the day, you could probably say that I´m the most successful newcomer to formula racing in the 2015 ADAC Formula 4 season. It proves that my basic speed is good. Many sponsors and partners follow the ADAC Formula 4 with great interest, and I hope I can now convince some of them to support me in the future.
Was the move up from karting to single-seater racing difficult for you?
It took me a little while in my first tests to get used to the Formula 4 car. Single-seater racing is a different world to my time spent karting. The first few metres on the track went well from a driving point of view, but I had a lot of respect for the speed. I felt really at ease after two tests in a formula racing car and did well in my first race too. Kart school was great preparation and enabled me subsequently to do the right thing at the right time in open-wheel racing.
You had a name to live up to in your first season in formula racing as German Junior Kart Champion. Did that put pressure on you or motivate you?
Neither. The ADAC Formula 4 was completely new to me. What I achieved earlier in karting was no longer important. Certainly, I was aware that I was perhaps a bit better known than other drivers because of time spent karting along with Mick Schumacher, but I never allowed outside influences to put pressure on me. Luckily, I have a great team around me that has always supported me really well. That´s helped me, and I want to thank them.
Did you learn anything special in the ADAC Formula 4?
I learned that it´s important to take the chequered flag in every race, and that there´s no point in taking too many risks. In the worst case scenario, that can lead to a collision, which is no use to anyone. What´s important is to get through, arrive and score points consistently. If the speed is there, you can even attack and fight for top positions. The ADAC Formula 4 deserves respect, since the level of competition is tremendously high.
And what about next year?
My dream would be to contest the FIA Formula 3 European championship, because I aim to do better each year. Still, doing one more season in the ADAC Formula 4 would also be good. I´m still quite young. In that case, I would aim to be a championship contender in 2016. I can also still learn a lot in the ADAC Formula 4. I´m still at the start of my formula racing career when all said and done. We´ll have a think over the winter what to do next.