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The First Time - with Caterham's Marcus Ericsson

17 Oct 2014

Marcus Ericsson first tested a Formula One car in 2009, and yet it wasn't until 2014 that he landed his second outing - and his first full-time seat - with Caterham.

So can he recall some of the other firsts in his life, like his childhood hero, or the first sport he ever competed in? We caught up with the Swede for the latest instalment in our series designed to help you get to know the world's finest drivers just a little better...

Who was your first hero when you were a child?

Marcus Ericsson: Michael Schumacher. It was kind of miracle that there was somebody winning the title seven times. That must be a hero!

What was the first Grand Prix you can remember watching?

ME: I don't know what was my first race, but I remember Michael in his red Ferrari winning and winning and winning. That stuck in my mind.

How old were you when you first decided you wanted to be an F1 driver?

ME: Probably nine years old when I started go-karting. You have to have a goal - even if it is so elusive - and it helps you be successful when you aim high. (laughs)

When was your first big accident in a race car?

ME: When I was 15 I started testing on these small tracks in England and they had very little run-off areas, but - knock on wood - it was never anything serious.

What colour was your first helmet?

ME: It was gold and blue - and with a chequered flag on it.

When did you win your first trophy in racing and what did it look like?

ME: It was when I was nine in karting. I ended in P2 and was very proud to take a trophy home, especially as it was quite big - quite impressive.

What was the first road car you drove?

ME: It was my dad's car when I was learning to drive, so very likely it was some kind of Audi. The first car I owned was a Volvo 740 from 1990.

Where was the first house you lived in?

ME: My family house back in Sweden - in Kumla.

How nervous were you on your first day of school?

ME: Isn't everybody nervous on his first day in school? It's when you are told that from now on the serious side of life starts.

What was the first meal you ever cooked?

ME: Something simple: spaghetti with meatballs.

What was the first thing you did this morning?

ME: Switch off the alarm. I need an alarm - I struggle to wake up by myself.

What was the first thing you did after getting your first F1 seat?

ME: I got very happy and excited - and called my family.

What was the first record you bought?

ME: I downloaded it - from the band Good Charlotte.

What was the first sport you participated in as a kid?

ME: Ice hockey. That has tradition in Sweden.

When was your first romantic kiss?

ME: Some time ago in school. Shy and a bit overstrained. (laughs)

When was the first time you were asked to sign an autograph for a fan?

ME: In karting in the Swedish championship, when I was around 14. It felt a bit strange that somebody wanted my name on a sheet of paper.

When did you first taste champagne?

ME: Aged 15 or 16 - on one of the podiums.

Which would you eat first - a piece of fruit or a piece of chocolate?

ME: I would love a piece of chocolate, but these days - even if it is not so strict anymore with the weight - I would take the fruit.

What was the first word you said as a baby?

ME: I am sure it was 'mama'.