Grand Prix 2018 Mexico Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

The Mexican grand prix is our next race and you lucky people have got me writing this one up. Good luck to all who carry on reading, you might need it ;)

F1 has long had a stop and start love affair with Mexico City but the Autrodromo Hermanos Circuit once again hosts this race. For those who don't already know, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez was in part named after two brothers who tragically lost their lives there. Ricardo died shortly after the circuit opened in 1962 and sadly his brother Pedro also died whilst racing some nine years later in 1971 but in Germany. It is located in Magdalena Mixhuca Sports City which is in the south east of Mexico City and is a public park that has been used for other events such as a baseball, the park is also home to the Insomniacs Electric Festival or EDC Mexico, a popular music festival that attracts over 200,000 people.

The thin air in Mexico City can cause problems for both drivers and cars, the speed at which the cars can get up to on the main straight is 370 km/h or 230 mph in old money. It first appeared on the calendar in 1962 as a non championship race before becoming a championship race in 1963. It remained on the calendar until 1970, had a brief reinstatement from 1986 to 1992 before finally returning again in 2015 and has since run to date. During one of the breaks it was used for the Grand Prix Of Mexico Champ Car. Sebastien Bourdais the former Toro Rosso driver apparently won three of the six races held there from 2002 - 2007.

After some speculation in the years beforehand, this race returned to the calendar in 2015. It was probably helped by having two Mexican drivers at that time with Sergio 'Checo' Perez and Esteban Gutierrez. Whilst Gutierrez is now a mere memory Perez is still there plugging away at Racing Point Force India and will no doubt be the busiest man on the grid this race weekend. Perez has never done that well at his home race, he's certainly not made an appearance on the podium so far. Can he do better this year? Somehow I doubt it unless something extraordinary happens ahead of him. Checo has of course been confirmed at Racing Point Force India in 2019 most likely with Lance Stroll as his team mate. His current team mate Esteban Ocon could be doing a straight swap with Stroll by taking his former seat at Williams.

Since 2015 we've had three different winners here, Rosberg in 2015, Hamilton in 2016 and Verstappen in 2017, so will it be a fourth different driver on the top step in 2018? In 2017 your pole sitter was Vettel and the podium was as follows: 1st Verstappen, 2nd Bottas, 3rd Raikkonen.

With only this race and two more this year it’s so far been a season for Mercedes to savour and for Ferrari to wonder where it all went so wrong. A really good race in USA and a rare win by Kimi with Seb 4th and the title goes on to Mexico. Vettel has made some big mistakes, mostly borne out of his desperation to win for Ferrari it seems, whether the pressure on him is coming from himself or the team it’s hard to say, either way it’s not done his racing any good. He did well in Austin though, that pass at the end on Bottas was crucial in some ways. Vettel and Verstappen both have new team mates coming in 2019, I am wondering what, if any, effect that will have on them. I’d like to think it would be positive but who knows?

So it's hello or Hola! to Mexico, slap on your sombrero, let your feet get tapping to the rhythmn of the mariachi bands and let’s hope we all enjoy another good race.
 
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Chasz

Podium Finisher
The real irony would be if the Ferrari is the class of the field for these last three races then Seb could have been in with a real shout for the championship
 

F1Brits_90

Champion Elect
alanis morrisette wasnt the 1st song that cames to my mind when thinking of vettel

oops I think I did it again
I made you believe that we could race clean
Oh baby, It might seem like a crash
But it doesn't mean that Its serious
'Cause to lose all my title chances
That is just so typically me

 

Olivier

Race Winner
Ricardo was the Max Verstappen of the time, similar natural ability and also similar hot-headed approach to driving. Unfortunately for him racing in the 60s was unforgiving ... Pedro was better know for his ability to tame the beautiful Porsche 917, aka "the beast" (by me). It was a rival to Jo Siffert, the endurance master, and a few times gave him a run for his money (as siffert_fan can attest)
 

Bill Boddy

Professional layabout
Contributor
Bill Boddy Sadly that is true. I don't know what's got into him lately, I really don't.

But he's always done the chop, ask Mark Webber. For a long time he was able to get off the line and out of the way due to a car which would give him a two second gap at the end of lap 1.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Bill Boddy I agree Vettel was usually the lap 1 getaway from the rest of the field to win. His overtake on Sunday seems a bit strange seeing he was clear of Ricciardo and somehow still managed to hit him and spin himself round

Angel I think Vettel is tightening up in those moments and flooring the throttle to try and not lose time and its happening the reverse where he is overdoing and spinning himself
 

Angel

Race Winner
Contributor
Bill Boddy I agree Vettel was usually the lap 1 getaway from the rest of the field to win. His overtake on Sunday seems a bit strange seeing he was clear of Ricciardo and somehow still managed to hit him and spin himself round

Angel I think Vettel is tightening up in those moments and flooring the throttle to try and not lose time and its happening the reverse where he is overdoing and spinning himself

ll_leone That is pretty much what Jolyon Palmer said. So in effect he's trying too hard not to crash and is then making himself spin instead.
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
But he's always done the chop, ask Mark Webber. For a long time he was able to get off the line and out of the way due to a car which would give him a two second gap at the end of lap 1.

I don't think in any world you can put his starts and ability to pull that initial gap down to the car. We've seen time and time again that Vettel is exceptionally good at managing a lead and comes into his own when leading from the front. We've seen this at both Red Bull and Ferrari. I would go as far to say I've never seen a better driver at managing gaps and pace to those behind him. His issues come when in the pack as we've seen.

However good a car is it can't consistently get you a good start and a 2 second gap by the end of lap one. Ask Mark Webber.
 

Angel

Race Winner
Contributor
Steve Jones of Channel 4 has said that if Hamilton doesn't wrap up the title this race he's going to present the show from Brazil in a 'bra and panties'. Man I'd like to see that LOL:snigger:
 

olegg

Race Winner
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