The Spanish Grand Prix opens Formula One's European season this weekend as the teams make the short journey to Barcelona for Round Four of the FIA Formula One World Championship. The Circuit de Catalunya, located just to the north of one of...
The Spanish Grand Prix opens Formula One's European season this weekend as the teams make the short journey to Barcelona for Round Four of the FIA Formula One World Championship. The Circuit de Catalunya, located just to the north of one of Spain's cultural hot-spots, is a favoured testing venue among the teams, and is a well known entity to the drivers who have all banked considerable mileage at the track over the winter.
Although the team's scheduled test at the Barcelona track last week was compromised by two accidents, the team is confident that its revised aero package will still deliver key performance advantages this weekend.
This year's race will be the 17th Formula One event held at Montmeló. Having secured five race wins at Barcelona, AT&T Williams have taken just under a third of all available victories at the Spanish circuit. The team will look to experience, combined with aero and mechanical upgrades delivered specifically for the race, to drive the FW29s of Nico Rosberg and Alex Wurz to points scoring positions this weekend.
"It's good to be back in Europe, especially Barcelona. It is always a great place to race because of the amazing atmosphere there. It will be interesting to see how the new track layout works as this year will be the first time that we have raced on it. I'm looking forward to fighting hard again to get us to the top of the middle pack and get some points for the team."
"Barcelona will be a very interesting race for everyone in the paddock because it will show which of the teams' aero upgrades are the most efficient. Even though I have done so many tests at Barcelona over the years, it is always challenging to get it right over the race weekend, and this year particularly so because of the new chicane in the last sector. Qualifying will be very important because overtaking is almost impossible on the track."
Sam Michael, Technical Director, Williams F1:
"Barcelona's penultimate corner has undergone a modification since last year. The effect of this has been the conversion of two high speed corners into a slow speed chicane. As a result, the last corner can now be taken flat out, which may improve overtaking on the pit straight, but that remains to be seen as the first corner still has quite a fast entry."
"Although we spend quite a bit of time testing at Barcelona over the winter, circuit conditions over the Grand Prix weekend are usually quite different with respect to grip level and wind. The layout of the circuit, which has reasonably fast corner entry speeds, means that brake wear at Barcelona is relatively low. Pit stop strategy will most likely be a two stopper."
"We have an aerodynamic and mechanical package upgrade for the FW29 for the Spanish Grand Prix which will give the cars some more performance to help close the gap to the front runners."