Nico Rosberg once again leads Lewis Hamilton by 43 points into this weekend, but will Hamilton have the upper hand here? Will the Red Bull swap between Max Verstappen and Daniil Kvyat pay off? Will new updates to many teams work?
History of the Spanish GP
The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya has played host to the Spanish grand prix for the first time in 1991. Spain has hosted some memorable races in the past like: In 1996, remarkably, the last wet race in Spain was Michael Schumacher’s brilliant first Ferrari victory.The race in 2012 was that was also historic as Williams Pastor Maldonado won ahead of Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso and Lotuses Kimi Raikkonen. This marked Maldonado’s first win of his F1 career and Williams first GP win since the 2004 Brazilian grand prix. Tyre wear is also very high here so drivers and teams will trying to limit the wear.
- Lap record: 1:21:670, Kimi Raikkonen, 2008
- Laps: 66
- Circuit length: 4.655km
- Race distance: 307.104
- Corners: 16
Michael Schumacher has the most wins round here with 6. 1998 and 1999 world champion, Mika Hakkinen has 3 wins with Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen of the current grid with 2 wins each. Alonso, being Spanish has added to the success of the circuit since his debut in 2003 and won in 2006 and in 2013. Raikkonen is also an expert at this track winning in 2005 and in 2008 and having the lap record.
Even more crucial for Hamilton to win
This weekend will be a crucial race for Lewis Hamilton and his Mercedes crew. Hamilton has suffered from engine and gearbox issues which his Mercedes team want a clean weekend with no trouble for the reigning champion. If Hamilton is to start his charge for the championship, it better happen now!
Will Verstappen benefit from Kvyat swap?
If you don’t impress and keep on the good side of Dr Helmut Marko, your out! Max Verstappen has benefited most from the swap for the rest of the season with Daniil Kvyat. The swap came after the Russian grand prix where Kvyat missed his braking point and rear ended Sebastian Vettel on the first lap. The move has divided opinion and both, Verstappen and Kvyat will want to prove their worth this weekend.
Updates up and down the field
As we head into the first race of the European season, teams bring many upgrades here.
Renault – Will bring new front wing and rear wings. Jolyon Palmer will get a new chassis and Renault will also evaluate the B-spec power unit during the two day test.
McLaren – Will bring new front and rear wings, bodywork and floors. McLaren are optimistic heading into this weekend but races after Spain from Monaco onwards will suit their car a lot better.
Manor – Will bring a new package this weekend including new front and rear wings and floors.
Haas – Will bring a new look rear wing. The team also brought a new front wing last time out in Russia.
Ferrari – Will bring a new rear wing this weekend and are hoping for more luck to start and hunt down Mercedes as reliability and bad luck has affected the Italian team.
These are just some of the teams who are bringing upgrades here this weekend.
Qualifying is on Saturday the 14th of May with the Race on Sunday the 15th of May.