Honda F1 Portuguese Grand Prix - Set Up

Honda F1 Portuguese Grand Prix - Set Up

22.10.2020: Portuguese Grand Prix F1 round 12 Portimao, Algarve 23-25 October 2020 Another debutant on the F1 calendar, Portimao, or the Algarve Circuit to give it its official name, is set to become the sports 79th host venue for a Grand Prix this weekend.


Portuguese Grand Prix
F1 round 12
Portimao, Algarve
23-25 October 2020



Another debutant on the F1 calendar, Portimao, or the Algarve Circuit to give it its official name, is set to become the sports 79th host venue for a Grand Prix this weekend.
 




The track, opened in 2008, is a modern venue with drastic elevation changes designed to test car, driver and engine over its challenging 4.6km layout. With no running previously completed here, Friday will be an important day for all teams as we get busy understanding the characteristics of the circuit ahead of the weekend. Although this is our first trip to Portimao, it’s not the first Portuguese Grand Prix.



Honda’s last trip here was in 1992 at Autodromo do Estoril, where Gerhard Berger and Ayrton Senna powered on to a double podium, finishing  second and third just behind our old friend Nigel Mansell in the Williams. With 10 podium finishes in a row now for Honda power in 2020, the entire team will be looking to keep the momentum going as we head into the last six rounds of the season.
 
 



 
Toyoharu Tanabe
Technical Director, Honda Racing F1   



“We now come to the 12th round of this unusual season and, as was the case with Mugello, we are at a track where Formula 1 has never raced before. Set in the hills around Portimao and around 300 kilometres from Lisbon, the Algarve circuit looks very interesting with many climbs and drops and blind corners, so it should provide plenty of excitement for the viewers.


At Mugello and in fact the Nurburgring too, we had to prepare for a track where we had never raced in the hybrid era and some of the experience gained at those tracks in terms of how we prepared will also be useful this weekend. We carried out a lot of simulation work with our two teams to make up for the lack of previous data and we are satisfied with our preparation work for this race. It means the three hours of Friday free practice will be particularly important for the rest of the weekend.




 In the past few races, both Aston Martin Red Bull Racing and Scuderia AlphaTauri have been very competitive and we hope to carry that momentum forward here in Portugal. The last time I was at a Portuguese GP was the 1990 race at Estoril, when Ayrton Senna finished second and Gerhard Berger fourth: it gives us a good target to aim for this Sunday.”
 
 



Max Verstappen
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing   




“It’s a great track! I was there for a couple of days and it was raining for most of it but it was still fun to drive, especially in the wet.


“It’s full of elevation changes and the track layout is just very cool. It’s a bit technical but overall it’s a fast circuit so I’m looking forward to driving a Formula One car there now. I enjoy going to new tracks, it’s something different for everyone and it can mix things up which makes it interesting.



“We had a good weekend at the Nurburgring and I think we took a step forward with the car. We seemed to be closer to Mercedes which is very positive and with another new track coming up I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do.”
 
 



Alexander Albon
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing   


“Yes I have good memories from Portimao with pole position and a podium there in Formula 3. It’s a really cool track with a lot of character and a good flow to it. The first thing that hits you when you arrive are the mega impressive elevation changes throughout the circuit. It’s going to be physical with the heat and it’s quite a bumpy track with some blind corners on entry which just adds to the fun.



“At one section of track you go up a hill almost blind where you feel like the car is going to take off and then it suddenly drops down a hill before rising again into a completely blind corner. You brake, turn in, and you don’t know where you’re going and then the corner just appears on your right, before dropping down massively again. It’s really impressive and it’ll be good because I think, as we saw in Mugello, new tracks are fun and make it interesting. They throw the dice a bit in terms of how teams are able to adapt to the circuit.



“I think new tracks give opportunities to the inexperienced drivers because we’re used to going to new tracks all the time in junior categories. In F1, the experienced guys have done the same circuits day in day out so it puts the ball a bit more into our court and makes it more fun, it evens the playing field going into FP1. ”
 



 
Pierre Gasly
Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda   



“I was super happy with my sixth place at the Nurburgring, especially since Saturday had been tricky because the characteristics of the track did not suit us as well as the ones we had raced on recently. At the moment I feel I am very comfortable with the way we are all working as a team, and race by race we are increasing our understanding of what it takes to get the most out of the car. I am satisfied with how things are going and happy that the results are there. The team is doing all it can and that makes me happy. Now we take that momentum forward to the next race.
 


“I have never been to Portimao, but I have had two days in the simulator to prepare for it, as well as Imola. It will be exciting going to two tracks I don’t know, even if I have driven a handful of laps at Imola. I find it interesting going to new places: already this year we have had Mugello, where I had never raced, and also Nurburgring was the first time for me in a Formula 1 car and I have enjoyed that. Portimao looks to be a very nice track, with plenty of elevation changes and some unusual corners, and although I think a few teams tested there many years ago, it has never really been used for Formula 1.



It will be important therefore for the team to be well prepared and to do a good job in free practice. Let’s see how we go there. At the moment, we seem quite strong on Sundays, managing to fight for points, even if we struggle a bit in qualifying. I am looking forward to it and looking forward to some warmer weather, as it was really cold at the Nurburgring, so it will be nice to return to more normal conditions.”
 
 



Daniil Kvyat
Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda   





“Unfortunately, the Nurburgring race did not go well for me from lap 12 onward when I got hit by Albon, but these things happen in racing. He got penalised, but my race was damaged from then on and so was my car. Up until then, I was definitely racing for solid points and I had been happy with my lap in Quali. However, the events were out of my control and luck has not been my strongest point this year, to be honest. Nothing seems to have landed in my basket for free. I have had to work hard for everything.
 


“But we will turn the page and move on. We keep working, we keep digging with my engineers and I am still happy with the way we approach each race weekend. Our understanding of the car is much better, and it will come right soon. It’s been good for the last few races and it was just this last weekend where we were unable to score points.
 


“As for the next race, I’ve never been to Portimao, so it will be a completely new experience for me and I guess for most of the other drivers. It will be an interesting challenge. A while ago, I did a few laps of the Algarve circuit on the simulator, but it’s not so fresh in my mind. I think we will have to work hard and learn everything we can on Friday and Saturday morning. It’s a fresh start! It is quite an unusual layout, with drops and climbs, so something different to work on. We should get ideal weather there at this time of year, in the low 20s maybe, certainly better than the unusual conditions we had at the Nurburgring.”
 
 

 

 Honda Motor Co. also photo

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/honda-f1-portuguese-gp-set-up---214764.html

22.10.2020 / MaP

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