Friday, November 23, 2012

Brazilian Grand Prix - Formula 1™ - Overview

The Brazilian Grand Prix (Portuguese: Grande Prêmio do Brasil) is a Formula One World Championship™ race which occurs at the Autódromo José Carlos Pace in Interlagos, a district in the city of São Paulo, Brazil.
2012 Brazilian Formula 1™ Grand Prix Autódromo José Carlos Pace,
Brazilian Grand Prix History
A Brazilian Grand Prix was first held at Interlagos in São Paulo in 1972, although it was not part of the Formula One World Championship™ . The following year, however, the race was first included in the official calendar. In 1978 the Brazilian Grand Prix moved to Jacarepaguá in Rio de Janeiro, briefly returning to Interlagos for the next two seasons before becoming the sole host from 1981 onwards, due to safety concerns with the 5-mile Interlagos circuit and the slums of São Paulo being at odds with the glamorous image of Formula One. During the 1980s at Jacarepaguá most of the races were held in hot temperatures and were from a physical standpoint extremely brutal; most drivers who won the race on the very demanding circuit at Rio often finished in a state of exhaustion. 1989 was the last race at Jacarepaguá, this race was won by British driver Nigel Mansell in his Ferrari, the first Grand Prix won by a car with a semi-automatic gearbox. In 1990 the Grand Prix returned to a shortened Interlagos, where it has stayed since. The 2004 event marked the first time since the race's admission to the Formula One Championship calendar that it was not one of the first three rounds of the championship season. In 2005, for the first time, the Brazilian GP decided the Formula One World Championship™ , won by Fernando Alonso. On November 2, 2008, Felipe Massa became the latest home winner of the Brazilian GP; his victory in the last race of the 2008 season was still not enough to secure the championship as he lost to Lewis Hamilton by a single point.
The Interlagos circuit has created some of the most exciting and memorable races in recent Formula One history, and is regarded as one of the most challenging and exciting circuits on the F1 calendar. Along with Spa-Francorchamps, it is rare in that the circuit in its modern form is one of the few with a lengthy history in the sport not considered to have lost much of its mystique or challenge in its adaptation for the modern, much more safety-conscious era of 21st century Formula One.
Particularly memorable recent Brazilian Grands Prix include the 2003 race, which saw a maiden Grand Prix victory, highly unexpectedly, and amidst chaotic and unusual circumstances, for Jordan's Giancarlo Fisichella. Heavy rain before and during the race produced problems with tyre selection which caught out many teams, which allowed the weak Minardi team to have a real chance for victory the only time ever, because they were the only team who prepared to the rainfall, but their drivers were also soon out. And treacherous track conditions caused multiple drivers to spin out of the race, including then-reigning World Champion Michael Schumacher, ending a remarkable run of race finishes dating back to the German Grand Prix 2001. Amidst this, a number of drivers, including McLaren's Kimi Räikkönen and David Coulthard, led the race, and, when a heavy accident involving Renault's Fernando Alonso blocked the circuit and brought out the red flag, confusion reigned. Fisichella led the race at the time, having just overtaken Räikkönen; however, it was the Finn who was declared the race winner under the count back rule, which stipulates that the race result in such circumstances is taken from the running order two laps prior to the race being stopped. This decision was overturned days later in the FIA Court of Appeal in Paris after new evidence came to light which proved that Fisichella had crossed the finish line in the lead for a second time before Alonso's accident, and therefore was the rightful winner.The 2001 Brazilian Grand Prix. was notable for marking the explosive arrival of Juan Pablo Montoya onto the Formula One scene. The Colombian driver stunningly muscled his way past Michael Schumacher early on and led easily until an incident in which Arrows' Jos Verstappen ran into the back of his Williams-BMW and ended his race. Montoya did eventually lay to rest the ghost of this event by winning the 2004 race in his final Grand Prix for Williams before moving to McLaren, holding off his future team-mate Kimi Räikkönen to take a hard-fought victory. The 2001 race is also notable for two brothers, Michael Schumacher and Ralf Schumacher, sharing a row on the starting grid for the first time.

2012 Brazilian Formula 1™ Grand Prix Autódromo José Carlos Pace,

At the 2006 Brazilian Grand Prix
Fernando Alonso became the youngest ever Formula One World Champion at the 2005 Brazilian Grand Prix, his third place behind winner Juan Pablo Montoya and championship rival Kimi Räikkönen enough to clinch the title with two races remaining.
For 2006 the Brazilian Grand Prix, as in 2004, was moved to the prestigious position of hosting the final round of the season, in what was Michael Schumacher's first farewell to Formula One, before his return for the 2010 Formula One season. Starting from 10th position on the grid, Schumacher did an astonishing job on his last race. He fell to 19th position on the ninth lap due to a flat tyre caused by a minor collision with Giancarlo Fisichella when the former was trying to overturn the latter. After pitting for a new tyre he returned to the race, just in front of leader Massa, so almost being overlapped, passing several drivers to take the chequered flag in fourth place, after a dazzling passing manoeuvre on Kimi Räikkönen. His performance was not enough to give 'Schumi' his eighth trophy, as Fernando Alonso, who needed only one point to become Formula One World Champion again, finished in second place. Brazilian Felipe Massa took pole position and led the race from start to finish for the second victory of his career and celebrations from his Brazilian supporters.
In March 2008, the mayor of São Paulo announced that he had signed a new deal with Bernie Ecclestone to continue the holding of the Brazilian Grand Prix. This deal allows the Brazilian race to be on the calendar until 2015. With this, Interlagos is set for major improvements in its pit and paddock facilities.
In the final race of the 2008 season at the Brazilian Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton became the youngest Formula One World Championship™ , to that point in Formula One history. After adopting a conservative strategy without risks for most of the race to secure at least 5th place, and the title, a late-race rain shower caused unexpected trouble. First, Hamilton was pushed down to 5th place by German Toyota driver Timo Glock who didn't enter the pits for intermediates like most other front runners. With just 3 laps to go, Sebastian Vettel then also overtook the Briton on the track which meant he would end up with equal points to Massa, but with one victory less. While everybody was focussing on the battle between these two (Vettel managed to stay in front in the end), against all expectations both were able to overtake Glock, who had lost all grip with his dry weather tyres, in the very last corner before the finishing straight. This meant that, while the McLaren driver's title rival Felipe Massa won the race in his Ferrari, Hamilton ultimately grabbed the fifth place he needed to become champion. Renault's Fernando Alonso, the previous youngest champion, was second ahead of Massa's team-mate Kimi Räikkönen and Toro Rosso's Sebastian Vettel.
Five Brazilian drivers have won the Brazilian Grand Prix, with Emerson Fittipaldi, Nelson Piquet, Ayrton Senna and Felipe Massa each winning twice, and Jose Carlos Pace winning once. The most ever is by the Frenchman Alain Prost, who has won it 6 times (including 5 times at Jacarepaguá). Argentine driver Carlos Reutemann and Michael Schumacher have both won 4 times
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