|Sent on:||Friday, March 23, 2012 2:32 PM|
2012 Formula One Season, Round 2
Race: Malaysian Grand Prix
Track: Sepang International Circuit
Lap Distance: 5.543km / 3.444m
Number of Laps: 56
Race Distance: 310. 408km /[masked]m
Top Speed: 303kph / 188mph
Average Speed: 203kph / 126mph
Average Corner Speed: 125kph / 78mph
Full Throttle: 65%
Brake Wear: Medium
Tire Usage: Medium / High (still unknown for the 2012 season; data based on 2011 information)
Pit Lane Lose (approx): 23 seconds
Fuel used per lap: 2.6kg / lap
Fuel Laptime Penalty: 0.3 s/ 10kg
Pit length: 419m
Key Issues – super high ambient temperature and low grip
Let’s follow the F1 crowd to one of the hottest races of the year; we’re heading to Kuala Lumpur for the Malaysian Grand Prix. Teams will continue to push KERS (and install it for those that didn’t have it) and run their DRS (Drag Reduction System) to get the most out of this double straight track layout. It’s actually very important to get it right during the straights since these two account for 25% of the lap. Historically this track has produced some of the wettest races we have seen, but we’ll keep our fingers crossed for a dry race. The weather forecast is definitely calling for rain all weekend.
Sepang International Circuit was the first of Hermann Tilke’s Formula 1 circuit designs and was built in 1998 and made its debut in 1999. This track delivers 15 (10 right-hand and 5 left-hand corners) incredible turns. Additionally the Malaysian GP places a huge strain on the physical condition of drivers, as this is one of the hottest and most humid races of the year. Due to the humidity drivers can lose up to 6 to 7 pounds in sweat. Because of the track’s location the threat of a storm can strike at any time, with rainfall the rubber on the track tends to get washed away leaving drivers struggling to find grip. The teams will most likely run a similar areo package that they used in Australia, but with more openings to ensure greater cooling efficiency. The Sepang track is a medium speed circuit, but is especially hard on the front tires of the cars. This year with drivers lacking the rear downforce they will have to take extra care of the fronts to execute a quick lap time.
This circuit combines nice high-speed corners with a few low-speed, acute corners. Some key features of the circuit are the smooth, sweeping chicanes capable of negotiating at speeds in excess of 200kph (124 mph). The Sepang International Circuit actually has some of the sharpest corners out of any track of the season indicating teams will need call on high downforce and an excellent car setup to tackle these corners. What is even more interesting though is that drivers never use first gear throughout the track, even with the tricky hairpin. The trick for teams is setting up the car to handle a quick change of direction and remaining stable while cornering. This circuit provides two critical areas for drivers. Look to Turn 1 for overtaking, a long right-hander after the long straight provides an opportunity to overtake by late braking, and then at turn 14 (penultimate corner), offers a hard breaking corner where entry to the corner is not visible so it’s important to carry as much momentum as possible onto the back straight. Looking at last year’s overtaking activity; turn 15 has been a key area to overtake opponents.
If you’re looking to watch Live with other race fans please join us for the Malaysian Grand Prix!
Sunday March 25th @ 4AM (EST) at
Feile Bar & Restaurant
131 West 33rd Street
Between 6th and 7th
New York, NY 10001