Singapore, preview – Norbert: “Singapore embodies the attractions of modern Formula One in a very special way”
The next race on the Formula One calendar is one of the most spectacular of the season. As the sport’s only night race, the Singapore Grand Prix provides a fantastic show under the lights around the 5.073 km Marina Bay Circuit, and has quickly become a firm favourite with fans, teams and drivers.
The Safety Car has been deployed at least once in every Singapore Grand Prix since the inaugural race in 2008. The circuit features nine corners taken below 100 kph, more than Monaco, and 15 different braking events.
The drivers change gear 80 times per lap - 50% higher than the season average and nearly double that of Monza.
“With the conclusion of the European races, we now enter a very intense countdown to the end of the season with seven flyaway races in just two and a half months” reminds Ross. “The first of these weekends is in Singapore for one of our favourite races of the season in the unique conditions that a night race brings. Now in its fifth year, the routine of the weekend with working late at night and on a European schedule has become well-practiced and everyone at the team loves visiting the lively city of Singapore.
On track, we concluded our successful Young Driver Test at Magny Cours yesterday, and we have a lot of useful information which is now being studied at our factories at Brackley and Brixworth to help bring improvements to the car for the final seven races of the season.”
“This year's Singapore Grand Prix marks the beginning of the final 'flyaway' phase of the 2012 season, which will comprise seven races in nine weeks” says Norbert. “This will be the fifth edition of the Singapore Grand Prix, which embodies the attractions of modern Formula One in a very special way: a spectacular city-centre race, where fans can get close to the action and which is run at night in a unique atmosphere for Formula One.
In spite of relatively slow speeds, the circuit is a tough challenge for the drivers and cars. There are a total of 23 corners, including 10 in the final sector alone, and the drivers will change gear almost 5,000 times during the race. At over 100 seconds, the lap time is the longest of the year and only Monaco has a lower average speed. However, last year's race in Singapore featured nearly three times as many overtaking moves as the race in Monaco.
The demands of Singapore, with a lot of relatively slow corners, are completely different to those of Monza, with its straights and selection of high-speed curves. We have been hard at work since the last race, with Sam Bird and Brendon Hartley testing developments over three days at the Young Driver Test in Magny Cours in order to further improve our car performance.