This will be final preview of Formula 1 races before the summer break, which starts after German Grand Prix this weekend. After a one-year pause, the German Grand Prix is back and it will be driven at legendary Hockenheim circuit once again. The drivers have been waiting for this race as it marks the end of an absurd six events in eight weeks and the beginning of the month-long summer break.
Reigning champion Lewis Hamilton took the lead in driver’s championship for the first time this season after a dominant win at the Hungarian Grand Prix last week. Hamilton has been on fire as he won five of the last six races and now has a six-point lead over Mercedes’ teammate Nico Rosberg. In the battle for third place, more than 70 points behind the Mercedes duo, only 15 points separate the four Ferrari and Red Bull drivers while all other drivers are way behind starting with Valtteri Bottas in seventh place. As for the Constructor’s championship Mercedes is so far ahead at the half-point of the season that they have almost secured the title while battle for the second place between Ferrari and Red Bull is getting more and more interesting with only one point separating them so far.
The Hockenheimring circuit once famous for its dangerous corners and insane high-speeds was tamed in 2002, with the long sweeping flat-out turn through the forest cut off and six new turns added to the circuit. Old configuration with huge straights and difficult chicanes caused many accidents and several tragedies since mid-1920’s when the track was built. The new, 4.57 kilometer long format is not nearly as exciting as it now has 16 turns, but it still has the great stadium section for the fans at the end of the lap and designers added very long high-speed Turn 5 named Parabolica as the homage to the original corner at Monza circuit.
TYRES AND WEATHER
Tyre manufacturer Pirelli is bringing supersoft, soft and medium compounds to the German Grand Prix. The track at Hockenheimring contains long, fast straights, but also has the slower stadium section at the end of the lap and the surface is very smooth, which helps limit wear and tyre degradation. With little tyre degradation, we probably could expect two pit-stop strategy from most of the teams. As for the temperatures for this weekend, the highest expected should be around 28 degrees Celsius. The rain is unlikely, with the sun and some clouds over the weekend. The race starts on Sunday at 14:00 Central European Time.