The Spanish Grand Prix




After a break of almost three weeks, Formula One action will resume with the Spanish Grand Prix, to be held at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, this coming weekend. The race which is more than 100 years old now, celebrated its centenary in 2013.The first ever Spanish Grand Prix was held in 1913 and was actually a touring car race on a road circuit in a small town near Madrid. In the middle, World Wars and the Spanish Civil War halted the race for years. However, the race was revived as the Spanish Grand Prix in 1951 and has been a regular fixture in the Formula One seasons since 1968.

The Spanish Grand Prix

The Spanish Grand Prix

The current Spanish Grand Prix is held at the Catalunya Circuit which was built in 1991 with the Spanish Government’s support and has been the prime track for all major races in Spain. This will be the 25th time the Grand Prix is being held on this track and the fifth race of the season. In a bid to keep the other tracks in Spain alive, an agreement in 2013 to host the race alternatively every year was signed between Catalyuna and Valencia Street circuit, however the latter dropped out due to financial reasons.

This is one of the most familiar tracks for the teams and drivers as it plays host to the pre-testing season for all the teams. This same reason has brought a lot of criticism calling for a different test venue. Michael Schumacher holds the maximum number of wins on this track (six) and all of his wins came along from pole position. Apart from Michael, Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso are the only drivers on the grid with multiple victories on this circuit. Lewis Hamilton would certainly like to add his name to this list.

Last year, Lewis Hamilton took pole position and went on to win the race followed by Nico Rosberg making it a rather monotonous Mercedes 1-2 finish. This season too looks to be the same as Mercedes are the quickest on the track. Ferrari has race pace and better management of tyres so it would be interesting to see what strategy they would be adopting to challenge the Mercedes team.

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Anjan K Merkap

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