In 2007 Valencia signed a seven-year contract for European Grand Prix with F1 boos Bernie Ecclestone and promoters Valmor Sport Group. Contract move towards despite Bernie previously claim no European country should host more than one grand prix a season.
Valencia street circuit is based in Valencia’s harbor region which was a lot reconstruct as a home for the America’s Cup Yacht race which was hosted by the city in 2007 and 2009. There seems to be an unwritten rule in modern F1 that you can’t design a new circuit without the expertise of Herman Tilke, and Valencia is no exception.
He designed infrastructure and buildings including a 140-metre long swing bridge that links the two sides of the harbour and allows the track to make the best use of the natural features. Although essentially a road course, the designers have tried to incorporate all the safety features of a permanent circuit.
The circuit was tested for F1 by running a meeting at the end of July 2008 which featured Spanish F3 and International GT’s; the F3 race was won by new local F1 hero Jamie Alguersuari. The first grand prix was held nearly a month later, and was won by Ferrari’s Felipe Massa from pole.
Ticket sales for the race were sluggish for the second race in 2009 but were stimulated on the news that Michael Schumacher would return to F1 to deputise for the injured Massa. The organisers refused to refund tickets after he cancelled his comeback. In 2010 the attendance fell from a high of 112,000 two years earlier to 75,000, leading to speculation the costs may lead to the organisers seeking to get out of their deal with Ecclestone.
Lap length 5.419km (3.367 miles)
Race laps 57
Race distance 308.883km (191.931 miles)
Lap record* 1’38.683 (197.688 kph) by Timo Glock, 2009
Fastest lap 1’37.587 (199.908 kph) by Sebastian Vettel, 2010
Maximum speed (2010) 314.5 kph (195.421 mph) by Sébastien Buemi, Toro Rosso
DRS zone (race) Two straights
Full throttle 69%
Power loss 6%
Tyre energy (1-3) 3
Brake energy (1-3) 1
Downforce level Medium
Gear changes per lap 64
Fuel use per lap 2.9kg
Pit lane time loss 21 seconds
2011 prime tyre: Medium
2011 option tyre: Soft
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