Monday, September 16, 2013

Singapore GP Preview - Marussia

Last weekend, the Marussia F1 Team said "Arriverderci" to Europe and will now embark on no fewer than seven long-haul rounds of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship, beginning next weekend in Singapore.

The sport's only night-race represents new ground for drivers Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton, who will compete at the flood-lit Marina Bay Street Circuit for the very first time in the 2013 Formula 1 Singtel Singapore Grand Prix on 20-22 September.

Laps 61... Circuit length 5.073 km... Race distance 309.316 km... 23 corners, 9 right-handers, 14 left... Circuit direction anti-clockwise... Lap record 1:45.599 (Kimi Raikkonen - 2008)... The only night race on the calendar, joining in 2008... Circuit hallmarks - uses public roads around Marina Bay, powerful lighting replicates daylight conditions, circuit characteristics reminiscent of Monaco - short straights and numerous first and second-gear corners require a very high level of downforce to give good braking stability and traction, tough on brakes as there are so many braking zones and so few straights, requires the drivers to focus during the whole lap as any mistake can be crucial... Tyre nomination Pirelli PZero White Medium and PZero Red SuperSoft...

Jules Bianchi: "The Singapore Grand Prix will be a totally new experience for me as my first night race. In my debut season, where everything is new, it is certainly one of the highlights of the calendar for me and I can't wait for next weekend. Having been to the race previously I know that there are so many different aspects to the weekend - staying on European hours, going to bed when I should be getting up and eating breakfast in the middle of the afternoon. I've driven the track on the simulator and it looks like a lot of fun, although it will be pretty hot in the cockpit. The next part of the season is going to be quite a challenge for everyone, but the Team is pushing so hard to maintain 10th place in the Championship and I really hope that is going to be possible for us."

Max Chilton: "Singapore is a great city and I can't wait for my first Formula 1 night race experience there next weekend, although it's not a new circuit for me and I have great memories of winning there last year in GP2. The track is quite reminiscent of one of my favourite circuits, Monaco, and I would be happy to achieve the same sort of result as I did that weekend in Monte Carlo. Working to European hours is always interesting but I've seen the floodlights first-hand, so I know that while it feels like night-time in the Paddock, it's like daylight on the track. We've done a lot of work behind the scenes to try to optimise our current package and for my part I'm quite pleased with how my pace is really building, so my first objective for Singapore is to maintain that momentum."

John Booth, Team Principal, Marussia F1 Team: "We always feel a little sad putting Europe behind us, along with some of the classic motor racing venues. Having said that, we're never sorry to head to be heading to Singapore, for one of the Team's favourite races. The atmosphere and spectacle are quite unique and this year it will be nice to share our experience with two drivers who are very excited to be competing in their first night race. The conditions are quite tough for the race team and drivers, with the fierce heat and humidity, but the unique racing environment soon overshadows those factors and I'm sure we'll look forward to enjoy every second of the Singapore Grand Prix."

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