Thursday, July 9, 2015

Interview: Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky "To be the first woman on the podium in Audi Sport TT Cup, that was cool"

By Tarek Ramchani

Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky had a dream weekend at the Norisring in the second round of the Audi Sport TT Cup. The young talented Swedish driver became the first women to clinch an overall podium in the newly formed Audi single-make racing series.

Read also: Podium and big points for Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky at the Norisring

We were pleased to have a new interview with Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky. Talks about her performances at the Norisring, the upcoming round at the Red Bull Ring and more.

The Norisring weekend started with a sensational performances in qualifying, tell us more about that.

The qualifying in Norisring was really under difficult conditions. It was raining a bit, a little bit too much for slick tires, but still to little for rain tires.

The plan for me was to wait out the rain, but it actually increased so my coach Kris told me to get out and make 2 fast laps. So I did, and then when seeing that I was P3 for race 1 and 2 I was SO happy!!

How difficult were the conditions in race 1?

Well since I didn't get any experience from the rain race in Hockenheim, we went a bit wrong with the tire pressure for the wet race, and I overheated my tires already after 8 laps.

So the remaining 17 I really had to struggle, and then finished P7 among us permanent drivers.

Sunday’s race 2 turned to be a magical one, how emotional was it to clinch an overall podium?

Amazing is not even an "enough" word do describe my feeling! I was so happy, jumping around and just smiling :-)

Really brought my confidence back after race 1! And then again, to be the first woman on the podium in Audi Sport TT Cup, that was cool.

Tell us more about the fierce battle with SEAT Sport factory driver Jordi Gené in the closing stages of race 2.

Before the 2 last laps I had a gap of 3 seconds to Jordi, so I was really safe and calm at the moment.
Then we were about to overtake the last car which was one lap after, and then he didn't move out of the ideal line so I lost my contact to P2, and Jordi came really close!

I had to close the door many times, also in Schöller S I got a huge oversteering, but could handle it and had to once again close the door for Jordi.

But he was really nice and fair, and to be honest I think he understood my frustration from the overtaking of the last car, and he knew I had a big gap before it, so he was really fair :-)

He is a great driver, and also a great person!

The Red Bull Ring will be the next stop for the Audi Sport TT Cup, what are your targets and hopes for the Austrian round?

Red Bull Ring is a track I like! With it's hilly character and fast corners.
My goal and target is like for the other races, just to do my best and gain as my experience and knowledge as possible.

Audi has two highly competitive single-make series, the Audi Sport TT Cup and the Audi R8 LMS Cup, which one do you think is stronger?

That question I can't answer, since I've not raced in the R8 LMS Cup. But it seems to be a very though one too!

Some motorsport followers are claiming that single-make racing is boring, what is your answer about that?

My answer to that is, have they looked at an Audi Sport TT Cup race? ;-)

No but I think it get's even more interesting, especially in our series with the push-to-pass!

Photo credit: Audi Media