As Istanbul straddles two continents with the end of Europe and the start of Asia, the teams are facing their longest trip for the trucks and motorhomes to get to the Turkish Grand Prix, which will be held on 30th May on the Asian side of the colorful metropolis.
On the 19th May the convoy transporting the hospitality unit boarded the ferry from Triest to Pendik, the harbour on the Asian side, where it will arrive on the morning of the 22nd. The three race and two support trucks followed two days later and will arrive on Monday morning in Pendik after the 54 hour ferry trip.
Pedro de la Rosa says: “I think Istanbul Park is a track where we should be able to regain the competiveness we showed in Barcelona, therefore I’m very much looking forward to the Turkish Grand Prix. I like the circuit. The last time I raced there was in 2006 and I finished fifth. Certainly the most challenging corner is turn eight – it is the longest high speed corner of the championship. With G-Forces of approximately four g for a period of six seconds on each lap this turn is pretty demanding for the tyres and the neck. Again, I desperately want to finish a race.”
Kamui Kobayashi says: “We learned another lesson in the last race in Monaco. But before that in Barcelona we had a really positive feeling for the improvement of the car, and I hope we can carry on from there. Istanbul Park is a nice track and it should suit our car, especially because it has both high and medium speed corners. The slower parts in the last sector should not be too much of a disadvantage. We have to remain confident and work hard.”
Technical Director James Key added: “From the street circuit in Monaco we go to a very different track in Istanbul, which I think is one of the teams’ as well as the drivers’ favorites. There is a big mix of very different corner speeds. It also has an interesting topography, which adds to the characteristics of the corners and the set-up of the cars. We have a mix of medium speed corners in the first sector, followed by the famous turn eight, which is very long and hard with a high g level. This is always a challenge for the drivers and the cars. Then we move on to a couple of long stretches at the back of the circuit where drag is important, and then to the windy section at the end.
"It’s a very technical circuit with a lot of different corner types, so you have to make the right compromises on the car. It’s a more normal circuit compared to where we have just come from, and I think it should suit our car better. Because of this we are looking to return to the form we showed in Barcelona, and carry all our set-up directions from there to Istanbul. We will use the F-Duct system again in Turkey, and we will also have some small aerodynamic updates on the car which should help us to be competitive.”
Circuit: Istanbul Park / 5.338 km
Race distance: 58 laps / 309.396 km