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Thread: Belgian GP 2017 News

  1. #1
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    Belgian GP 2017 News

    Kimi, Seb focus on Spa: “We have high hopes, but nothing comes easy”

    Francorchamps, August 24th – It’s not raining in the Ardennes-which is not so obvious for this region! Scuderia Ferrari drivers, Kimi Raikkonen and Seb Vettel, are about to start their racing weekend off the back of the announcement that Kimi has been confirmed for next season. “To drive for Ferrari – he says “is special and I feel privileged to be in the team also for next year. Ferrari is Ferrari, and it’s different to any other team. I’m very happy to stay and the team is happy, too; I’m really glad that the deal is done, so now we can focus on racing the end of the season”.

    Commenting on the nature of the challenge ahead, Kimi notes: “Spa is quite a unique place: it’s an old fashioned circuit and I like it very much; a challenging place, great for drivers and for the spectators; a lot of overtaking and many other things happen in a race that is always unpredictable. Some people think this may not be such a good place for us, given the nature of the circuit, but there are fast tracks where we have been very strong this year, and also in the past we have been very competitive here . We have high hopes, but nothing comes easy, we can only do our best”.

    “This track changes a bit every year” Seb comments “so we’ll see how it goes. We brought updates here but we don’t underestimate our competitors. Spa is a beautiful place, with a lot of supporters coming over, and I am really looking forward to racing here. I don’t see this race and the next one as more ‘critical’ than others: in fact, here and Monza rank probably among the best, because of the atmosphere. But first of all, it is nice to be back after the break and able to jump in the car. As for the renewal of Kimi’s contract, there is no discussion on his talent. It is nice to see the team is appreciating his work and I am happy to work with him”.
    CAVALLINO RAMPANTE PER SEMPRE

  2. #2
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    Eau Rouge is the most famous, but is it the most demanding?

    93 years and still going strong, Spa-Francorchamps is the granddaddy of the current Formula 1 circuits, as well as being the longest at over seven kilometres. However, by comparison with the original circuit, inaugurated in 1924, it pales into insignificance, the older one being an altogether bigger beast and almost fifteen kilometres in length. Apart from a few modifications, the current layout has been in use since 1979 and the Ardennes track has hosted nearly all the Belgian Grands Prix, right back to the Twenties and then from 1950, the first year of the Formula 1 World Championship, although there were a couple of exceptions held at Nivelles and Zolder between 1970 and ’80. When it comes to Zolder, one cannot help but recall that it was here in 1982 that Gilles Villeneuve left us. The much less well known Nivelles circuit, not far from the Belgian capital, Brussels, was less than four kilometres long.
    For all drivers, Spa is something of a right of passage. It’s one of the tracks where a driver can “make the difference,” which might explain why Michael Schumacher won here six times and Ayrton Senna five. Kimi Raikkonen has won at Spa four times and two of those victories, in 2007 and 2009, were with Scuderia Ferrari. Mention Spa and thoughts immediately turn to Eau Rouge and Raidillon, the brutal vertical compression to which driver and car are subjected, as the incline changes. However, maybe not everyone is aware that, these days, the most demanding corners, also from a physical point of view, are Pouhon and Blanchimont. These two “kinks” actually produce the highest lateral forces of the whole season. And this year, with the new aerodynamic rules and wider tyres, one can expect to see staggering figures. On the subject of tyres, the use of the softest ones in the range – Soft, Supersoft and Ultrasoft – should add another interesting element to a race that, thanks to its setting and atmosphere, is one of the absolute highlights of the sport.
    CAVALLINO RAMPANTE PER SEMPRE

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