The first half of the 2024 Formula 2 season is done, and it could not have gone much better for Hitech Pulse-Eight’s rookie driver Paul Aron.

The Estonian currently leads the Championship with 117 points heading to Round 8 in Silverstone, with his nearest rival Isack Hadjar 11 points behind.

A huge part of why he is in this position has been his consistency as not only is he on a nine-race points scoring streak, but Aron has also achieved a podium at each of the first seven rounds.

Looking back on his first months as a Formula 2 driver, Aron acknowledges how good the statistics are but says that is not completely why he is enjoying his time in the Championship.

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“Talking non-statistics and non-facts, I've been really enjoying this season,” he said. “I've had a very good time with Hitech. They've obviously delivered from their side, the car has been really quick, we've made step forwards quickly and I've just had a blast racing in Formula 2.

“I think the racing is really fun because we've got some strategy in play now, there is a lot more I feel like you can control. In F3 I felt there was a lot more things that were out of your control, in Qualifying there was many cars so there were risks of Red Flags, yellow flags and your laps getting taken away.

“In the races there was always a lot of chaos and the top 12 Sprint Race always put you in a difficult place, so I feel like in F2 there is more in your hands, I'm really enjoying that, and the racing has been really cool.”

Aron has achieved a podium finish at each of the opening seven round
Aron has achieved a podium finish at each of the opening seven round

Aron describes himself as someone that often eases himself into a season rather than starting off fast, and with 14 rounds in Formula 2 he thinks that suits him better.

Taking a methodical approach each race weekend rather than going “flat out” is also part of what he feels has worked for him, as he enjoys thinking about his pitstops, tyres, and strategy over a race distance. But also working with Hitech has been a huge plus.

“Yes, for sure,” said Aron when asked if he is in a great place mentally. “Obviously, everything is always easier when the performance is there but nevertheless, we had a tough time in the pre-season test, both me and Hitech.

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“Then they made a huge step forward and I bounced back, and we had a really successful first round. We've just worked really hard, and I've enjoyed it with the guys. Everyone in the team is very honest, very straightforward and that's the way I am.

“We have managed to move forward quickly, we are not trying to sugarcoat things. When things are bad, we try to make them better and when they are good, we appreciate that. So, in that sense, I would say our approaches aligned and that has made for a very nice and enjoyable season.”

While Aron has enjoyed working with Hitech, the team also feel the same way about him. Team Principal Oliver Oakes recently spoke of how “proud” he has been to see the way the rookie has worked with the team since they first met.

Aron and Hitech are enjoying their time working together
Aron and Hitech are enjoying their time working together

When this was put to Aron, the topic of his leadership came up and he believes that is something that has always been a part of his character. However, the big difference now is he knows how to better communicate his thoughts.

“I think a driver's role is to be a leader and personality-wise, I have always been that person,” he explained. “Ever since I was in school when there was group work, I always wanted to lead the group and especially in things I knew I could do well, and in racing I knew I could do well.

“I feel like I have always been like that but in previous years when I was younger maybe I didn't know how to manage different people. You work with a lot of different people throughout your racing career and maybe I didn’t come across as I wanted and that can sometimes make it a bit more difficult to get on with the team.

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“But I think normally as I’ve grown up, I've matured, I've learned and now this year I am just applying all my knowledge. Both our goals are the same, we want to win, I know that this F2 season is crucial for my career so the minute we signed the contract, I went flat-out to try to make the best out of it.

“I arrived at the workshop and saw how hard the guys were working and I just kept pushing. I didn't see a point of going to drive in Formula 2 and just sitting around. You've got one year, and for me the rookie year is where you need to deliver.

“I've tried to leave nothing on the table and because of that I've pushed the team, I've pushed myself, the team have pushed me as well, and we've had a very good relationship.”

Aron says he has been working flat out to get the best out of himself this season
Aron says he has been working flat out to get the best out of himself this season

Aron has also been in constant communication with the team even when away from the track. Calls with the engineers have been frequent as has his time spent at the factory on the simulator.

For him, this is part of his growth as a rookie and while the first seven rounds went well, Aron says he still has a few things to learn.

“Let's not forget I am still a rookie, so the more I drive the more comfortable I get with the car and the more I am able to extract from it,” he continued. “On the other hand, the more experience I gain, the more I can lead the team to suit the car to me and the more experience the team gain with the car the more they know which direction to go.”

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Part of what he is keen to improve is the mental aspect of racing. He used his weekend in Barcelona, where he started on Pole before finishing fourth in the Feature Race, as a clear example of why.

“I was very happy in Barcelona because people were saying I am up there because of consistency but I don't have the pace, then I went and put it on Pole,” he said.

“In that sense I think I am on top of the game now in Qualifying pace, but that doesn't mean that we will now be on Pole everywhere because every round is different. Different tracks suit different cars and the Championship and whole series is really tight.

Aron talked about improving his mental approach in order to become a better drive
Aron talked about improving his mental approach in order to become a better drive

“In Barcelona we were on pole by two-thousandths so in that sense, there is not too much point to overthink it. The end goal of every weekend is to bring home as many points as we can. Sure, I would really like my first win, but I think forcing it is also not the right approach.

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“In Barcelona that is what bit me back, and I ended up not only losing the win but also costing us a podium and a few points. I made the mistake of overdoing the first stint and I got comfortable and felt the race was mine to lose. Once I lost track position, I got too impatient to get it back.

“But after making the mistake it was important to calm down, bring home the maximum result and in the end, we finished fourth and I still extended the Championship lead, that’s what it is all about. Hopefully now I can learn from my mistake and next time I am in a situation like that, do better.”