Established in 1986, the Hungaroring is a permanent circuit just outside the country’s capital, Budapest. It has 14 corners, runs clockwise, and is 4.381km in length. A top speed of 291 kph can be reached at the end of the pit straight, just before braking hard for the first corner.
The weather forecast for this weekend is sunny with a high of 37 degrees. This will make tire management crucial as the high track temperature, along with the tight and twisty layout could cause blistering of the Pirelli soft and medium compounds. “Temperatures are a key element for the tires to work perfectly; each compound has its own window of optimal temperature,” according to Mario Isola, Pirelli Racing Manager.
The Hungaroring is also notoriously hard on gearboxes; this will be on the minds of the Red Bull engineers, as their cars have been known to suffer from such problems. Sebastian’s first and only Did Not Finish (DNF) of the season during the British Grand Prix was a reminder of that.
Overtaking is very difficult at the Hungaroring, so getting your car on pole is imperative. While Red Bull Racing is favored to be start from P1, Lotus, which is known for achieving better tire wear over the course of the race, might just give Kimi Raikkonen his first win of the season. Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg could also join the fight for the top spot of the podium. Jenson Button, who got his first win here back in 2006, might spring a surprise, as he is known to be a smooth driver. Jenson could give McLaren its best result yet this season.
I am looking at a Kimi win, with Lewis and Fernando joining him on the podium.
Catch all the action this Sunday; coverage begins at 7pm with a race start at 8pm.
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