The Formula One circus is in Sao Paulo, Brazil for the penultimate race of the 2015 season. Although the respective Drivers’ and Constructors’ titles have already gone to Lewis Hamilton and his Mercedes AMG team, there’s still plenty of action to unfold at this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix and the final race in Abu Dhabi later this month.
The Brazilian Grand Prix is once again being held at Sao Paulo’s legendary Autódromo José Carlos Pace, generally known as Interlagos. The 2.6-mile circuit is one of the oldest in F1, having hosted its first world championship grand prix in 1973, and though it’s been altered and made safer since that first race, it retains much of its original character.
It’s bumpy, undulating and narrow, though it was just resurfaced last year so teams can expect a little less harshness. The weather is another factor that can be tricky here, as many types of weather are possible: from the record temps of last year to torrential rain. In fact, showers and a thunderstorm are predicted for Sunday’s race.
And like the previous race in Mexico, altitude is another factor that teams have to consider. The track is situated 2,625 feet above sea level and the thinner air has a bearing on all areas of car performance, particularly aerodynamics and cooling. Pirelli has nominated its medium and soft compounds for the race.
Last year’s winner in Brazil was Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg. Going into this weekend’s race, Hamilton leads the 2015 Drivers’ Championship with 345 points. Rosberg is in second with 272 points, while Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel is in third with 251 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes sits on a massive 617 points while Ferrari is second with 374 points and Williams is third with 243 points.
It’s been revealed that Hamilton was a little late in arriving to Brazil. In addition to suffering a fever, the World Champion was involved in a car crash near his Monaco home Monday night. On social media he revealed there were no injuries but that his car was “obviously damaged” and that it had made “very light contact” with another, stationary vehicle.