Born in Starnberg, West Germany, on 11 January 1983, Adrian Sutil started his auto racing career with karting at the age of 14. He progressed to Swiss Formula Ford in 2002, winning all twelve events of the season. In 2003 this talented young driver achieved sixth place in the German Formula ADAC BMW Championships, and 2004 saw him driving for Team Kolles in the F3 Euroseries. In 2005 Sutil notched up two wins, two pole positions and no less than eleven podium finishes in the Formula Three Euroseries, completing the season as runner-up to Lewis Hamilton. In 2006 he won the Japanese Formula Three title and tested for Spyker as an F1 driver.
Sutil made his F1 debut with Spyker in 2007, and despite driving an uncompetitive car, his talent as a driver was evident and he was hailed as a star of the future. Continuing with Spyker, which had now become Force India, in 2008, Sutil continued to be hampered by uncompetitive machinery, nevertheless continuing to show his potential as a consistently competitive driver. Force India upped their game, and in 2009 Sutil claimed ninth place at the Melbourne season opener, achieved second grid slot in Italy (his best to date) and crossed the finish line in fourth position at Monza, earning his only point-scoring result of the year.
As the 2010 F1 Championship season gains momentum, still driving for Force India, Adrian Sutil has the opportunity to prove that he is indeed an F1 champion in the making and racing enthusiasts will no doubt be watching his career develop with great interest.
The Volkel Air Force Base in Holland was the scene of excitement and anticipation, while thousands of spectators waited anxiously to see Christijan Albers face off against an F16 Fighter jet airplane. Speculation and thrill soared through the excited crowd because experts and lay spectators alike were unsure who would be victorious. In the air, there is no match to the F16’s top speed of 2,020 kilometers per hour but how it was going to perform on the ground was anyone’s guess.
The Spyker Racing Team put their F8-VII on the line for the “Full Throttle” event and looked forward to the opportunity, especially as they have been associated with the Royal Netherlands Air Force for many years. The Formula 1 racecar, driven by Christijan Albers, can reached speeds of approximately 350 kilometers an hour, which is the average speed the F16 needs to lift-off. So, from a ground performance point of view, the F16 and the F1 Spyker F8-VII should be evenly matched.
The F16 was piloted by Captain Ralph Aarts, who has a long and distinguished flight record that includes 1,100 hours of flying and many operational missions. The accomplished pilot was as excited as Albers at the chance to race two powerful machines against each other.
At the start of the 1 kilometer race it seemed as if the Formula 1 Racing Car was going to get the upper hand. Albers had the starting advantage for the first 300 meters, but the F16 dug deep and managed to pass Albers and remain in the lead for the remaining 700 meters. The F16 aircraft completed the 1 kilometer stretch in 15.5 seconds, with its top speed at the finish line being 450 kilometers per hour. Captain Aarts then gently lifted his machine off the ground to perform a few maneuvers and tricks that left the spectators speechless and Albers with a new respect for the warriors of the sky.
Both pilot and driver enjoyed each second of the race, as Albers was overjoyed to have come so close to an F16 Fighter, and Aarts to a Formula 1 Racing Car. Even though the event was over in a few seconds and the F16 had won by a mere two car lengths, it was a day that was enjoyed by all.
It is not everyday that two of the world’s fastest moving machines get the opportunity to challenge each other. The race also served a very important function and that was to raise awareness for the Air Force’s Recruitment Program, to entice young future pilots to consider a career with the Royal Netherlands Air Force.