Preview of 2012 Formula 1 Brazilian Grand Prix Autódromo José Carlos Pace

The 2012 Formula One World Championship grand finale between Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso.

Interlagos circuit

The final battle in this season has come to South America in Brazil. It is just a blink of an eye since the first race of this season in Australia. Unlike in 2011, the world champion deciding race has moved to Brazil where Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso are battling for it with Sebastian Vettel having a 13 point lead against Fernando Alonso. Meanwhile, Ferrari and McLaren are also fighting for the second place in the constructors standings with Ferrari having a 14 point lead against McLaren. Brazil has been producing one of the most exciting races due to the high altitude circuit and tricky weather. And this year, with the unpredictable 2012 Pirelli tyres, Red Bull Racing multiple alternator failures, McLaren reliability and pit stop issues as well as Ferrari’s underpeforming car  and inaccurate wind tunnel, the world champion deciding race here in Brazil will be the most memorable and spectacular ever.

The circuit is situated on high altitude terrains, about 800 metres above sea level and the thin atmosphere will cause the engine to lose about 8% of the maximum power output. The big elevation changes throughout the circuit makes it very tricky to find the perfect aerodynamic set up for the cars. Generally, the cars will have a medium-low downforce set up for the weekend. The track is very technical particularly in Sector 2 where there are a lot of medium speed corners with elevation changes. Turn 14, the slowest corner on the track, is the most challenging one as the cars are heading uphill, it is easier to lose the rear wheels and get into a wheelspin. Pirelli will be bringing their P Zero Silver hard and White medium tyres to Brazil. The tyre wear of the circuit is quite low so a two stop strategy is expected for the race in the given combination.

Rain is predicted to fall on the race day and this will add a little spice to the already exciting battle between the title contender. Fernando Alonso, hailed as one of the masters of rain, may have an advantage over the younger Sebastian Vettel if it did turned out to be a wet race. There are also some other memorable events in Brazil such as Michael Schumacher’s second retirement and Lewis Hamilton’s last race in McLaren. After all, it will mark the conclusion for 2012.

Lap Record : 1:11.473 – Juan Pablo Montoya (2004)

interlagos circuit diagram

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