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2018 F1

2018 Canadian GP Preview

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The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal is a 4.361 km long circuit located on the Ile Notre-Dame on the St. Lawrence River. After a low speed circuit across the streets of Monaco with tight and twisting corners, the Canadian street circuit poses a different challenge to teams and drivers. This circuit is accented with power hungry characteristics, and it encompasses a series of quick straights coupled with some heavy-braking corners. The air and track temperatures at this circuit are normally the lowest on the calendar.

From the technical aspect, this circuit can be the harshest on braking with its heavy braking corners, and when it comes to tyres, it can be tricky getting the tyres into the optimum tyre temperature window. The tyres that Pirelli have nominated for this year’s Canadian Grand Prix are the super-soft (red) compound, the hyper-soft (pink) compound, and the ultra-soft (purple) compound.

The tricky part about keeping these tyres on their temperature window is when there isa safety car or virtual safety car during a race. In the SC or VSC period, with the pace slowing down, the tyre temperature start to drop too posing a unique challenge to teams who are not known for managing tyres too well. Due to the nature of the circuit with three long straights, heating the tyres could mean two-three laps. With the hyper soft featuring only the second time, after Monaco, on a circuit that it is completely different, it will be a tricky compound to use.

This year the circuit has been added with one extra DRS zone to allow more overtaking, and the new zone has been added 15m after Turn 5. With this extra DRS zone, the circuit will almost feature a DRS zone per sector.

If there is any circuit teams bring their power/engine upgrades to, it is this circuit due its power sensitive characteristics. This year Renault should be bringing their much anticipated upgrade to this track and so will Ferrari, which will highlight three teams particularly Renault, McLaren and Ferrari’s performance this weekend. However, Mercedes normally step up their game here, but according to recent reports, they will not be introducing their upgraded engine here due to ‘quality’ concerns or reliability issues and will do it instead at the French Grand Prix.

Surrounded with water on three sides, the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve turns out to be one of the most scenic circuits in the North American continent. While the driver to be most successful here is Michael Schumacher with seven wins (1994, 1996-98,2000, and 2002-04), on the current grid if anyone can equal the German’s record this weekend with a win, it would be Lewis Hamilton who already has six wins here (2007,2010, 2012, 2015-17). Other drivers who have been successful in claiming victory here are Kimi Raikkonen (2005), Fernando Alonso (2006), Sebastian Vettel (2013), and Daniel Ricciardo (2014).

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