Taking time out of his busy schedule, 2014 F1600 Formula F Championship Series runner up and rookie of the year, No. 83 Mygale/Honda and Team Pelfrey driver Garth Rickards reflected on this past season, gives advice, talks about success, and keeps his eye on the future.
Rickards sheds some humble light on his racing career by saying that he “surprised himself,” with claiming pole positions and proving himself as a fierce competitor from the very start of the 2014 season. He follows by saying that he “left nothing on the table,” and draws from the obstacles that present themselves throughout a season, and says that the hard work motivates him. Rickards displays this by dropping a phrase that has been said many times by drivers and athletes alike but still rings true; “to be the best you have to beat the best.”
Rickards also commented on how he learned the importance of teamwork when it comes to racing, and learning when drivers should work together, and when it is every driver for themselves. “ I learned how important it was to work with a professional race team and how to fight wheel to wheel for every lap of the race.” says Rickards
Most seasons come with their high points as well as their lows, and to the twenty-two year old Pennsylvania native, the 2014 season was no exception.
“High points have to be claiming the first pole of the season at Atlanta, and to be honest there were so many that it was hard to keep track of.”
Rickards talked about two low points for his season, one being taken out at Pittsburgh. Rickards describes it as “a turning point not in our favor for the championship.” Another low point was his weekend at Thompson Speedway where he experienced technical problems with tire usage.
On the topic of keys to success in racing Rickards had a few in mind.
“I think the keys are approaching the weekends in the right mindset are very important. Also, realizing that you are not going to lead every lap of a race in this series due to the draft is important.”
He also emphasizes “consistency, consistency, consistency.” Rickards finished in the top five every race other than the second race in Pittsburgh where he was taken out.
“Soak it in and enjoy it. Be open and willing to learn and most of all have fun.” Rickards gives advice to up and coming drivers with simple yet wise words.
“As for my career, I am going to keep striving to be the best on and off the track. I think sports cars would be a great career but the ultimate goal is Indy Car so that’s what I’m really pushing for in the next few years.”
Rickards has his eye on the prize and is well on his way to claiming it.