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Ferrari plan to push the championship right to the final Grand Prix in Brazil

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Open Wheel Racing Topics:  Ferrari, Brazilian Grand Prix

Ferrari plan to push the championship right to the final Grand Prix in Brazil

Andrew Regan
September 18, 2006

The final race of the Formula 1 season is always a big event. All the efforts of each of the teams come down to this day where the realization is made of who has had a successful season and who is the racing equivalent of an Edsel. This season has been a close struggle for points and has shown that Formula 1 is not dead as some commentators have tried to make out.

The 4.309km Interlagos track in Sao Paulo, Brazil, is the scene for this year’s triumphant finale, and it looks set for a great close to the season by Ferrari as they strive for the all important final set of points to overcome Renault.

The Interlagos track was created by two local property developers who bought a huge plot of land in 1938 only to discover it would not be suitable for building houses, and so decided to build a race circuit instead. Following on from the great Emerson Fittipaldi’s phenomenal success on the international scene, interest within Brazil blossomed for the idea of Brazil hosting their own Grand Prix, a goal that was realized at Interlagos in 1973. Since this time the race has been hosted a couple of times in Rio, but since the death of local Sao Paulo legend Ayrton Senna, the race has remained at the Interagos track, and the sport remains as popular as ever in Brazil.

The high altitude anti-clockwise track is made up of two main long straights combined with a quick series of tight turns which make this a technically challenging circuit for the cars, drivers and team engineers on this 71 lap race, where speeds range from 81km/h for certain corners up to 316km/h on the straight. With Ferrari and Renault guaranteed to be fighting wheel to wheel through the Senna S, this will be a great spectacle for the famously enthusiastic fans who flock to the track.

While the city was once dominated by run down favellas and shanty towns, it is now definitely experiencing an upturn of fortune. Current local formula 1 racing superstar, Rubens Barrichello has said of the city, “Yes there are favellas, but it is wrong that people should think of Sao Paulo as being horrid and dirty; every big city has its problems.” He firmly believes that, “There are some very beautiful parts of Sao Paulo, in which I’m happy to leave my kids in the car - that’s how safe it is.”

The circuit itself is situated about 16km south of the centre of Sao Paolo in the Interlagos district, and is easy to access via the extensive public transport network from Guarulhos international airport, which lies 25km north-east of the city. Booking a flight to Brazil is easy and race tickets are available through the official Formula 1 website.

This is going to be a race that true race fans will not want to miss.

About the author:
Andrew Regan is an online journalist who enjoys socialising at his local Edinburgh cricket club.

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