The start of the European season at last, the Spanish GP at the Circuit de Catalunya, or the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya as it is now known.The Spanish GP was first raced back in 1951 at Pedralbes, since then it’s been at four different circuits and raced 43 times, making this Sunday the 44th Spanish GP and the 24th at Catalunya. Fifteen of the 23 races have been won from pole position and 21 from the front row of the grid. Only twice has the winning driver started below second, Fernando Alonso last year won from fifth and Michael Schumacher from third in 1996.
The Circuit de Catalunya is a 4.655km long track with 16 corners, the race is 66 laps long giving a total race distance of 307.230km. 14 different drivers have won at the track and Ferrari and Michael Schumacher are of course the most successful at the track, with 8 wins for Ferrari and 6 for Schumacher. The lap record was set by Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari in 2008, a time of 1:21.670 and an average speed of 205kph or 128mph.
Every pole, win and fastest lap so far has been taken by a Mercedes car and I can’t see it changing yet. If Mercedes were to win the Spanish GP it would be the first time in F1 that they have won five races in a row, they have however won seven in a row in the pre-war European Championship.
Romain Grosjean will be entering his 50th GP this weekend, and an unlikely podium at the Spanish GP would be his 10th in F1. Mercedes have finished on the podium 39 times, and are likely to make it 40 soon.
The Silly Stats
Bullfighting is, or was, a popular sport in Spain but has now been banned in the Catalonia region which the circuit is in. However the average bull can run at 20mph meaning that it would take 8:43.688 to do a lap of the Spanish GP circuit.
The average adult bull is slightly heavier than an F1 car, with the car having a minimum weight of 642kg and bulls being between 500 and 1000kg.
For some more stats on the Spanish GP see my mini-stat page