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Kevin Magnussen

Ex-F1 driver praises 'spectacular' Magnussen comeback

Giedo van der Garde praised the comeback of Kevin Magnussen in 2022, after the Dane sat out of Formula 1 racing for a year.

Magnussen Pole Brazil
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Giedo van der Garde has praised the Formula 1 comeback of Kevin Magnussen, after the Dane sat out the 2021 season.

One of the stories of the year was the return of Magnussen, who was ousted at the end of 2020 as part of Haas' lineup change.

With Nikita Mazepin's Haas contract torn up following Russia's invasion of Ukraine before to the start of the 2022 season, Magnussen was drafted back in to race alongside Mick Schumacher.

Former F1 driver Giedo van der Garde, who raced for Caterham between 2012 and 2013, was full of praise for Magnussen's comeback, which began with a fifth place finish at the season-opening Bahrain GP.

Magnussen went on to sensationally achieve the first pole position for Haas at the Brazilian Grand Prix later in the year.

"The comeback was so spectacular," said Van Der Garde in an interview with Viaplay.

"I was racing with him last year in LMP2 at Le Mans, and suddenly he came back as a race driver in F1."

Van Der Garde: Magnussen was 'completely dead after two days of testing'

Outside of his F1 commentary duties, Van Der Garde races in LMP2 with Team Netherlands.

The Dutch driver recalls the start of the season when Magnussen was also racing in the category, and how the Dane struggled after the initial tests with Haas because he was not at the fitness levels required for F1.

He continued: "I still remember the evening tests that he was doing alone with Haas, they were doing really spectacular lap times. I was texting with him and suddenly he was completely dead after two days of testing, because if you come from LMP to F1 car the difference is huge.

"So he was not fit anymore, he did the race at Daytona, we went in the evening to the McDonald's, so he was a little bit too chubby as well!

"But to be honest when he jumped in, he was really, really impressive. And in the first few races he did were unbelievable."

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