Hungarian Grand Prix 11th - 13th August The FIA Formula One World Championship takes on a Central European flavour as the teams gather to Budapest for the tenth edition of the ...
Hungarian Grand Prix 11th - 13th August The FIA Formula One World Championship takes on a Central European flavour as the teams gather to Budapest for the tenth edition of the Hungarian Grand Prix, sponsored by Marlboro. Mika Hakkinen and Mark Blundell, flying red and white colours, will try to emulate the successes enjoyed there by the team since 1986.
The tight and twisty nature of the 3.968km-long Hungaroring means that all competitors will be seeking to achieve maximum downforce. For that purpose, the MP4/10 will feature a number of new aerodynamic devices, including the reintroduction of the mid-ship on the engine cover. Capitalising on the promise shown at the German Grand Prix, Mercedes will bring six Phase 2-1 power units to Budapest, all of which will be evolutions from the engines used in qualifying at Hockenheim, optimised to the drastically different circuit conditions found in Hungary.
Mika, Mark and Jan Magnussen were all busy testing at Silverstone over the last two weeks, working on further revisions to the suspension system and set-ups. Although all three drivers were using old specification engines and not going for times, their performances were very encouraging. Jan's leg injury was still causing discomfort in the first week, and restrained his ability to perform. However, following a superb outing in the International Touring Car championship at the weekend, which saw him score his first victory in that category with Mercedes, the Dane's confidence soared and by Day 4, he was able to set competitive times, ahead of Benetton's Johnny Herbert.
Although Mika will be racing on the Hungaroring for the first time since joining McLaren, he will be eager to improve on his last result, back in 1992, when he finished fourth at the wheel of a Lotus-Ford. Last year, driving a Tyrrell-Yamaha, Mark crossed the line in fifth position, just behind Martin Brundle's McLaren. Judging from both drivers' form in Germany and the constant improvements made to the MP4/10, the Marlboro McLaren Mercedes team hope that valuable championship points will be theirs for the taking on Sunday.