F1 Abu Dhabi – the facts Think you’re up to speed on your Abu Dhabi Grand Prix knowledge? Well, we’ve scoured the globe and picked the brains of F1 experts to compile a handy little compendium of facts and figures to really set your brain racing.
German design The Yas Marina track was actually designed by renowned circuit architect Hermann Tilke. Yas Marina (along with the likes of like Interlagos, Brazil, and Istanbul Park, Turkey) is one of the few venues on the race calendar to run in an anti-clockwise direction.
First test run The first person to actually drive a test run on the circuit was Bruno Senna (who is the nephew of the late F1 legend Ayrton Senna).
Twilight With the race starting at 5pm this means things get underway at dusk and end in the dark, making it Formula One racing’s first-ever twilight race. The track was built to host day and night-time activities, with over 300 lighting locations, some of which are pole mounted and some building mounted. The poles range from 4.0 meters to 15.2 meters in height depending on the elevation of the track and location of the pole.
Top speed With an estimated lap time of 1m 40s, the track’s top speed is a predicted 317km/h and its average speed 198km/h while the width of the circuit fluctuates from 12m-16m.
Construction Building the Yas Marina track was a gargantuan project and by its completion 14,000 workers had been on site, 35 million man hours had been expended, 1.6 million cubic metres of earthwork had been shifted, 720,000 square metres of asphalt had been laid, 225,000 cubic metres of concrete poured, while 30 kilometres of special electronic ducts, 25 kilometres of electrical cabling, 17 kilometres of drainage and 22 kilometres of irrigation piping had been installed. Phew!
Spectacular light show The 500 bedroom, five-star Yas Viceroy Abu Dhabi is the first hotel to sit astride a race track. Its outer walls feature an extraordinary 5,000 LED panel ‘Grid-Shell’, which is programmed to change colour in waves – and looks spectacular from afar.
Yas Marina Circuit factfile First Grand Prix: 2009 Number of Laps: 55 Circuit Length: 5.554 km Race Distance: 305.355 km Lap Record: 1:40.279 - S Vettel (2009)
2013 race schedule
Friday November 1 Practice 1 13:00 - 14:30 Practice 2 17:00 - 18:30 Saturday November 2 Practice 3 14:00 - 15:00 Qualifying 17:00 Sunday November 3 Race 17:00
Past winners and their times 2012 Kimi Räikkönen (Lotus-Renault) Time: 1:45:58.667 2011 Lewis Hamilton (McLaren – Mercedes) Time: 1:37:11.886 2010 Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull Racing – Renault) Time: 1:39:36.837 2009 Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull Racing – Renault) Time: 1:34:03:414