The F1 Beyond The Grid new episode has Nick Heidfeld speak about his career, BMW Sauber/Williams, Kimi Raikkonen, Robert Kubica and more.

In the latest episode of F1 Beyond The Grid, former racer Heidfeld has opened up about his career along with teams like BMW Sauber, Williams, Jordan plus his bosses and also rivals like Raikkonen, Kubica and more. Here’s a snippet of what he said:

  • Like many conversations in these times, the F1 Beyond The Grid podcast began with a quick talk about how Heidfeld is in quarantine. After this, though, they talked about the nickname ‘Quick Nick’, and the origin of the title.
  • Moving on, Heidfeld talked about the early signing of his deal with McLaren back when he was in F3; he also talked about his first test in an F1 car, and the ones that followed.
  • Fast-forwarding in his career, the topic moved on to his first year in F1 with Prost, and what this year was like both with the car and the team.
  • Heidfeld talked about the Austrian GP specifically, and his incident with Jean Alesi there.
  • Swiftly moving forward to the 2001 season, Heidfeld discussed about his teammate Raikkonen’s pace that year, and what went on with McLaren and himself at the end of the year. Away from the on-track pace, he was asked about his emotional relationship with the Finn.
  • Keeping on the topic of Raikkonen, the German discussed his feelings about the Finn still competing today, and compared himself, talking about how he personally would fare if he were to jump into an F1 car now.
  • Chronological order said that they would next talk about 2002, and that they did, as Clarkson had similar questions with regards to Felipe Massa.
  • After a brief stint talking about him, Heidfeld recalled his relationship with Mark Webber as they were teammates at Williams in 2005.
  • Talking about Webber inevitably led to the discussion about the Monaco GP that year, with the German providing insight into what happened within the team.
  • Heidfeld also talked about racing Fernando Alonso that year, and one thing led to another, which ultimately ended up in the discussion about the Spaniard coming back to F1.
  • The next driver to be talked about by Heidfeld was Kubica, the most complete of all of his teammates, according to him. With regards to the driver that filled in for the Polish racer at Williams, Vettel, he admitted that he felt that the German was overrated at first, but conceded that it was only one race and therefore not representative.
  • Teammates aside, Heidfeld discussed the fastest driver he has ever seen; it may come as no surprise that he answered this with Lewis Hamilton.
  • He also talked about his personal relationship with the six-time world champion, before chatting about whether Michael Schumacher stole the spotlight or not.
  • Moving back in time, Clarkson inquired about karting, and what this was like. Switching gears to 2004, Heidfeld reflected on this season, it being one where he performed well despite his car’s lacking pace.
  • Keeping on the theme of that year, the German spoke about the differences between Peter Sauber and Eddie Jordan, and whether it helped or hurt Jordan that Eddie was so extroverted.
  • They also talked about other team principals of his, namely the Williams management of Sir Frank Williams and Patrick Head, and what the shootout process of getting that seat was like. He further discussed that 2005 season with the team, and how he felt about driving that breed of cars, them being the last of the V10 era.
  • On top of this, the two then conversed about his missing of the last five races of that year. Speaking about why BMW never succeeded in F1, Heidfeld said that the manufacturer left too quickly.
  • Away from his actual career, per se, Heidfeld talked about a show run he did of an F1 car around the Nordschleife, how fast he was driving in this, and what it was like.
  • After this, Heidfeld explained how the 2010 Sauber differed from the BMW Sauber he drove for many years earlier. At the same time, he talked about what the early Pirelli tyre compounds were like, as he was a test driver who got to experience them.
  • Moving on, Heidfeld revealed that he nearly joined the Brawn GP team in 2009, and similarly, he talked about being a contender for the McLaren and Mercedes seats in 2010.
  • The retired F1 driver then detailed the frustration that these near misses caused him
  • Looking back, Heidfeld then said that he wish he had been more selfish in his career, even though he said that he’s happy he wasn’t more of an ‘asshole’.
  • Talking about his current work, Heidfeld told of what he is doing with Pininfarina, building the 2,000hp electric hypercar, Battista.

Due to FOM’s restrictions, we cannot use the podcast but we have the link where you can find it:

Here’s the last F1 Beyond The Grid podcast of John Barnard

The story was edited by Darshan Chokhani