Suzuka Circuit facts and stats

Suzuka Circuit facts and stats

06.10.2016: F1- Japan Grand-Prix 2016 Suzuka International Circuit Total number of race laps: 53

F1- Japan Grand-Prix 2016
Suzuka International Circuit



•    Total number of race laps: 53  


•    Complete race distance: 307.471 kilometers (191.054 miles)



•    Pit lane speed limit: 80 kph (50 mph)



•    This 5.807-kilometer (3.608-mile), 18-turn circuit has hosted Formula One since 1987, with last year’s Japanese Grand Prix serving as the venue’s 27th grand prix.



•    Kimi Räikkönen holds the race lap record at Suzuka (1:31.540), set in 2005 with McLaren.



•    Michael Schumacher holds the qualifying lap record at Suzuka (1:28.954), set in 2006 with Scuderia Ferrari in Q2.  




•    The layout of Suzuka is a figure-eight, and it is the only track on the 21-race Formula One schedule with such a configuration. It features every kind of corner, which makes it a favorite among drivers. They can push to the absolute limit even without their cars being stuck to the track via maximum downforce, provided their car is properly balanced aerodynamically. Too much downforce slows the car on the straights, while too little doesn’t instill the confidence drivers need to pedal their cars through the more intricate and twisty portions of the course. Drivers are aided by Suzuka’s high level of grip. The relatively old asphalt abuses tires, as the rough surface provides solid traction. This, combined with high lateral loads through the corners, produces a high rate of wear, which is why Pirelli has brought the three toughest tires in its lineup – the P Zero Orange hard, the P Zero White medium and the P Zero Yellow soft. Crafting the perfect lap is elusive at Suzkua, but extremely rewarding when achieved.




•    DYK? NASCAR staged two races at the Suzuka Circuit in 1996 and 1997. Both were exhibition events that took place at the end of the regular NASCAR season in November. The first race was won by NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace and the second race was won by Mike Skinner. In the 1997 event, rain tires were used by NASCAR for the first time in competition, with teams running Goodyear rain tires in practice and in qualifying. The quickest lap at Suzuka in a stock car came in 1996 when Wallace won the pole at a speed of 133.703 kph (83.079 mph) driving a Ford Thunderbird.



•    During the course of the Japanese Grand Prix, lows will range from 14-20 degrees Celsius (57-68 degrees Fahrenheit) to highs of 22-25 degrees Celsius (72-77 degrees Fahrenheit). Relative humidity ranges from 59 percent (mildly humid) to 88 percent (very humid), with a dew point varying from 16 degrees Celsius/61 degrees Fahrenheit (comfortable) to 23 degrees Celsius/74 degrees Fahrenheit (very muggy). The dew point is rarely below 11 degrees Celsius/52 degrees Fahrenheit (very comfortable) or above 26 degrees Celsius/78 degrees Fahrenheit (oppressive). Typical wind speeds vary from 5-26 kph/3-16 mph (light air to moderate breeze), rarely exceeding 35 kph/22 mph (fresh breeze).
 





•    Pirelli is bringing three tire compounds to Suzuka:




o    P Zero Orange hard – less grip, less wear (used for long-race stints)


§    This is the toughest tire in Pirelli’s range. It is designed for circuits that put the highest energy loadings through the tires via fast corners and/or abrasive surfaces, and are often characterized by high ambient temperatures. This compound takes longer to warm up, but offers maximum durability, which frequently means that it plays a key role in race strategy. It is a high working-range compound.


o    P Zero White medium – more grip, medium wear (used for shorter-race stints and for initial portion of qualifying)


§    This is Pirelli’s most balanced tire, with an ideal compromise between performance and durability. It is extremely versatile, but it often comes into its own on circuits that tend toward high speeds, high temperatures and high-energy loadings. It is a low working-range compound.


o    P Zero Yellow soft – highest amount of grip, highest amount of wear (used for qualifying and select race situations)



§    This is one of the most frequently used tires in Pirelli’s range, as it strikes a balance between performance and durability, with the accent on performance. It is still geared toward speed rather than long distances, but it remains capable of providing teams with a competitive advantage at the beginning of the race where cars are carrying a full fuel load and at the end of the race where the fuel load is much lighter and the race effectively becomes a sprint. It is a high working-range compound.



•    Two of the three available compounds must be used during the race. Teams are able to decide when they want to run which compound, adding an element of strategy to the race. A driver can also use all three sets of Pirelli tires in the race, if they so desire. (If there are wet track conditions, the Cinturato Blue full wet tire and the Cinturato Green intermediate tire will be made available.)



•    Pirelli provides each driver 13 sets of dry tires for the race weekend. Of those 13 sets, drivers and their teams can choose the specifications of 10 of those sets from the three compounds Pirelli selected. The remaining three sets are defined by Pirelli – two mandatory tire specifications for the race (one set of P Zero Orange hards and one set of P Zero White mediums) and one mandatory specification for Q3 (one set of P Zero Yellow softs). Haas F1 Team’s drivers have selected the following amounts:



o    Grosjean: three sets of P Zero Orange hards, three sets of P White mediums and seven sets of P Zero Yellow softs



o    Gutiérrez: two sets of P Zero Orange hards, four sets of P Zero White mediums and seven sets of P Zero Yellow softs

 

 

 
 
Mike Arning - photo copyright Getty Images

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06.10.2016 / MaP

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