Date: 18th March 2014 at 9:37am
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As Formula One debut’s go, Kevin Magnussen’s was pretty much perfect.

The announcement last season from McLaren that 21-year-old Danish driver Kevin Magnussen was to replace Sergio Perez for the 2014 Formula One season came as somewhat of a surprise to many.

The young Dane who had been part of McLaren’s Young Driver Programme since 2009, had been tipped to make the the move to Formula One after enjoying success in German Formula 3, British Formula 3 and the Formula Renault 3.5 series, but wasn’t necessarily being tipped to jump straight into the McLaren hotseat.

But if anyone thought the move had come to soon for him, then their thoughts were quickly quietened once the Australian Grand Prix race weekend was upon us.

On the Saturday he out qualified team-mate Jenson Button, qualifying in fourth, whilst Button was unable to get into Q3.

Then come race day, Magnussen drove a spotless drive to finish the race in third position and celebrate his debut on the podium.

?It?s just fantastic to be on the podium! What happened today just feels surreal. Being on the podium in the first race of my Formula 1 career – it?s amazing.’ he told formula1.com.

After the race Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo was disqualified after his car was in found to be in breach of new fuel consumption regulations.

That elevated Magnussen to a second place finish.

‘I want to say a big congratulations to the team for doing such a good job over the winter and for working so hard to prepare me for this – it?s just crazy! Where do we go from here? Well, we need to continue improving. And I?m sure we will. I?ll try to learn as much as I can, and to carry this experience forward to Malaysia.

McLaren team-mate Jenson Button was bumped from fourth to third following Red Bull’s disqualification, which meant that McLaren take a slender lead in the Formula One constructors championship after one race.

‘I?m sure the guys are happy to be leading the constructors? world championship, as indeed I am too. That?s a big boost, and the guys completely deserve it.?

Button added: I don?t think we expected to be leading the constructors? world championship at the end of this weekend, but I think the pace in the car is generally there: in clear air, we seem capable of fighting every team except one [Mercedes]. I?m really looking forward to getting back in the car in Malaysia.

 

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