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F1 Preview: Chinese Grand Prix 2011

Sebastian Vettel is the main favorite to win in Shanghai (Grand Prix of China 2011), but any problems with the KERS system could help McLaren and Ferrari to stop RBR’s dominance.

Red Bull authoritarian dominated through the two early victories in 2011 Formula 1 season by Sebastian Vettel in Australia and Malaysia, but the team have at least one person unhappy: Mark Webber needs a quick positive result to pose a real threat to his teammate.

The only weakness of the team remains the KERS system, but the Austrians will count on its benefits even in Chinese Grand Prix. If the team will again have problems with this technology, McLaren and Ferrari could exploit the situation to get the first win, especially since both teams are preparing updates for this race, but the surprise could come from Renault who finished on the podium in both races so far.

Technical News

McLaren will introduce a new floor and a new exhaust system in China in an attempt to make even more difference than Red Bull. In turn, those of Williams will seek a new exhaust system, while Ferrari will make a series of aerodynamic novelties. It is anticipated that the Lotus will also improve its race car, as well as those from Hispania Racing in pursuit of Virgin Racing rivals.

Shanghai International Circuit

Shanghai International Circuit, Shanghai, designed by Hermann Tilkean finished in 2004. The circuit in China enjoy the longest straight line on the calendar, the 1170 meters, which represents over 21% of the total distance of a lap. Another straight line is the long start-finish, so that KERS will play an important role here. However, the chances of overtaking are quite limited, especially because the first corner is addressed in the seventh speed gear full throttle before a series of slow corners. The circuit have seven right turns and seven left turns and require small to medium levels of downforce force.

Video RBR simulator – Here are the main characteristics of the Shanghai International Circuit:

Chinese Grand Prix 2011 Shanghai International Circuit Guide:

Technical characteristics of the Shanghai International Circuit (Shanghai, China):

Tour Length – 5,451 km
Number of laps – 56
Total distance – 305,066 km
Speed – 320 km/h
Average Speed – 190 km/h
Maximum g force – 3,5 G
Aerodynamic downforce – medium-high
Brake Wear – medium
Full throttle – 55%
Pressing the brake pedal – 14%

Strategies for Pirelli tires

Pirelli will supply the soft and seven hard tires in Grand Prix, as the first two stages of the season. Unlike Malaysia, temperatures in China will be significantly reduced, so that degradation of tires will be slower, so that the strategies adopted to change the tires will not have as great an influence. Pirelli has avoided making predictions on the number of entries to the speakers, but most drivers will probably opt for two or three shifts at the tire after the Sepang rule was three pit stops.

Weather Information

The Grand Prix of Malaysia avoided the rain, but things could change in the weekend in China. The first information indicates the occurrence of rain throughout the day on Friday and during Saturday, which is why Pirelli could be only hours away from the interim evaluation and seven rain tires. However, Sunday’s race will most likely take place on a dry circuit, even if the rains will depart again on the circuit on Saturday night to Sunday. Maximum temperatures will range from 25 degrees to 17 degrees Friday and seven Saturday, up to 21 degrees on race day, which is why Pirelli tire behavior might be different in the three days of competition.

Results in the last five years

The first edition of the Chinese Grand Prix took place in 2004, but no pilot was able to win twice on the Shanghai International Circuit:

Season / Winner
2010 Jenson Button (McLaren)
2009 Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)
2008 Lewis Hamilton (McLaren)
2007 Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari)
2006 Michael Schumacher (Ferrari)

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