Round 19 of the 2017 Formula 1 World Championship takes us this weekend to the Autódromo José Carlos Pace in Sao Paolo, Brazil. And although the championship has already been decided this year, the Brazilian Grand Prix is a race that shouldn’t be missed.
And also upping the excitement factor will be the top teams testing parts that could feature on their 2018-spec cars. With no title to chase, teams will be willing to take more risks with new, experimental parts.
The Autódromo José Carlos Pace, more commonly referred to as Interlagos, is one of the oldest in F1, having hosted its first world championship grand prix in 1973. And although it’s been altered and made safer since that first race, it retains much of its original character. It stretches for 2.6 miles and remains bumpy, undulating and narrow.
And like the previous race in Mexico, altitude is another factor that teams have to consider. The circuit 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.
And if that wasn't enough, the weather can also be tricky here, as many types of conditions are possible: from blistering heat to torrential rain. Looking at the current forecast, conditions should be fine for Sunday’s race though we could see some of the wet stuff during Saturday’s qualifying. Pirelli has nominated its medium, soft and supersoft compounds for the race.
As mentioned, the championship has already been decided this year with Mercedes-AMG taking the Constructors’ title, and the team’s star driver, Lewis Hamilton, the Drivers’ title, his fourth so far.
Going into the weekend, Hamilton sits on 333 points, Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel is second with 277 points and Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas is third with 262 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes has 595 points versus the 455 of Ferrari and 340 of Red Bull Racing. Last year’s winner in Brazil was Hamilton.