2015 Formula 1 Grand Prix Changes Focusing on Safety

The 2014 Formula 1 season started with myriad changes ranging from engine noise reduction to double points in the last race at Abu Dhabi. After Marussia’s team driver, Jules Bianchi, was seriously injured at Suzuka, safety became a hot topic once again akin to the period after Ayrton Senna’s death in 1994.

So now that the action is about to get a thrilling start with Australian GP, what changes do you expect in the car and circuits you so much adore? Here is a summary of these changes though some may change in the course of the season:

Safety_Car1.       Virtual safety car precautions

The accident involving Bianchi at Suzuka is largely blamed on the safety car timing. Well, the safety car is critical on every circuit to maintain track safe conditions by slowing down race cars in case of an event. To avoid accidents, the virtual safety car system (VSC) was pretested in the last races of the 2014 season to neutralize a race if there is an accident without having to call in the safety car.

2.       Grid Clearance

The minutest object on a race track can cause a major catastrophe and this has been proved through Senna’s death, which records indicate could have been caused by a foreign object on the Imola track. In the 2015 season, a driver will be forced to start from the pit lane if any equipment is left on the track after the all-important 15-second signal.

3.       Unsafe Releases

This is another risky situation on any F1 circuit and FIA has imposed an automatic 10-seconds stop-and-go penalty and more penalties for the relevant driver if a steward so deems fit.

4.       Nose Design

If there is one part of F1 cars in 2014 that enthusiasts derided it has to be nose design. Out-of-this world designs like Lotus came up with were simply ugly. With such unsymmetrical designs, safety issues started arising prompting FIA to outlaw nose tusks and anteater designs which are unstable.

5.       Skid Block Construction

This is to avoid any detachment at high speed which would put all the other drivers at risk. The proposal is to have lighter materials used and designed technically in a way that no amount of force can push the block to unlatch. Of course the upside of the titanium skid planks will be more sparks on the course, which adds to the thrill as witnessed when Rosberg and Raikkonen trialled them at the 2014 Austrian GP.

6.       Cockpit Safety

This is where a driver’s life is saved or lost. For this reason, FIA has imposed stringent rules extending the Zylon anti-intrusion panels on both sides of the cockpit to the rim of the cockpit and in line with a driver’s head. This protects the driver from flying objects during a crash and also brutal impact at high speeds.

7.       Pit-lane Procedures

To enhance more security in this highly accident prone section of the circuit, FIA has again re-issued rules on procedures allowed here. Personnel are only allowed immediately before the stop and must clear as quickly as possible once their work is complete.

Every personnel must wear protective fire resistant clothing with one assistant carrying a fire extinguisher present. Pit-lane speeds are still limited to 80km/h at all Grand Prix races except Monaco, Singapore and Australia where it stands at 60 km/h due to track configuration.

8.       Helmet Changes Ban

This is the rule that has been mocked most because it clearly does not add any value to safety according to drivers including Vettel. FIA says that in order to easily distinguish drivers on the track, substantial changes to crash helmet design and use of special helmets in races such as Monaco GP are banned. What was the safety precaution here again?

Well, every F1 season starts with its galore of drama, but for 2015, the mood is somber considering Bianchi is still recovering. Nonetheless, you are now better assured of your favourite driver’s safety once they hit the track at Albert Part, Melbourne on March 15th.

Want a Perfect View at the Monaco Grand Prix 2015?

The Monaco Grand Prix is all the hype when the date nears and for a good reason. Drivers have made and broken many records here. It also provides a fun time for individuals and families as well. Moreover, the track is one of the toughest, which means a winner here joins the books of the F1 greats.

If you already have your ticket, the question becomes – where do you get the best view? There is nothing as irritating as going all the way to the glamorous city and getting an obstructed view. Here are some places that will make your experience during the race a delight in order to create indelible memories.

monaco grand prix circuitStart/Finish VIP Terraces

This is one of the best vantage points for any avid F1 fan. No one can ever describe the thrill of seeing the crazy start madness and the exhilaration of seeing your favorite driver zooming in on the finish. Some terrace options include Heracles, Albatros, and Cravelle.

Tabac Corner

This is arguably one of the most magnificent views overlooked by the greatest Tribune K. It heralds the first left hand turn into the Piscine with the beautiful harbor giving it unparalleled beauty. You will get the thrill and still enjoy the rest of the exotic view without obstruction.

Antony Noghes

This is the first troublesome corner just after the start/finish and you can bet a lot of drama happens here. You will have a screen to help see the rest of the race. Tribune V overlooks this stage. Do you want to see the drivers up-close during build-up to the race? Buy your ticket now because these ones are the first to sell out.

Casino square

A medium grandstand Tribune B overlooks this stage and provides one of the best views during the race. It is located opposite the mercurial Monte Carlo Casino. It offers a good view of drivers tackling the stretch after the Massenet corner and then making a right-hand turn at amazing speeds.

Piscine Swimming Pool

It is visible from Tribunes L, M, O and P. There is a fast chicane on the entrance and a slower one on the exit. With the screen giving you the action as it happens, you feel close to the race. With water around you at Tribune N, O and P, the experience feels ethereal.

There are other options including the Fairmont terrace where you watch drivers manoeuvre the infamous Fairmont hairpin.

Now you are ready to enjoy the thrill brought on by the beauty of watching the race first hand and from the best views. To book your complete Monaco Grand Prix package for 2015 visit senategrandprix.com.

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Kimi Räikkönen Space

Report – Sixth and ninth places for the Scuderia Ferrari drivers in the inaugural Russian Formula 1 Grand Prix. Fernando Alonso got a great start, while Kimi Raikkonen fought tooth and nail to defend a points place finish to the very end.

Fernando got away perfectly, making up two places, while Kimi, who also got off the line well, then saw his efforts thwarted as he was squeezed against the wall.

Fernando was a front runner in the early stages even fighting for a podium place, but the switch to the Medium tyre meant he was unable to match the pace of the five Mercedes powered cars that would finish ahead of him. A bit further back, after his pit stop, Kimi fought off Sergio Perez in the Force India and Felipe Massa in the Williams, to successfully hang on to ninth place, these two also Mercedes-powered.

Lewis Hamilton won…

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Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – The Icing on the Cake

abu-dhabiThere is one Grand Prix circuit with a waterfront just like the one at Monaco. Welcome to Abu Dhabi. Grand Prix events are always in a class of their own. You need to experience the noise first hand. If you find speed thrilling, then this is your thing.

Race dates to get you prepped

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix takes place at the Yas Marina circuit. The first event took place here in 2009 with Sebastian Vettel having the best lap record. The record still stands to this date. This year’s event will take place in November.  Practice sessions kick off on Friday, 21 November 2014. Come Saturday, 22 November 2014, the last practice session will take place followed by a qualifying race. The icing on the cake will be Sunday, 23 November 2014.

Why Abu Dhabi GP thrills

Among the salient features of this race are:

  • Drivers race for 55 laps
  • The circuit has a length of 5.554 kilometers
  • The total distance covered is 305.355 kilometers
  • It is one of the latest introductions to the Formula One calendar
  • The circuit has the longest straight section among all active circuits in the world

The icing on the cake

This race will be the last one this season. In addition, drivers will get double points. The circuit has a 60,000 guest capacity, an increase from 55,000 in 2013. For this spectacular circuit, people watch the race from boats anchored in the nearby harbor. On the opposite side are magnificent stands which are also architectural marvels. As Formula One’s crowning event, there’s so much more to expect at Abu Dhabi. Organizers have arranged for a series of concerts featuring international artists. Get ready to witness one of the greatest fireworks displays you have ever seen. The question is who among Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg will pop the champagne?

History being written

Abu Dhabi GP is still at infancy having hosted only five Formula 1 races so far. This must also be Sebastian Vettel’s favorite circuit having won three times. Kimi Raikkonen and Lewis Hamilton are second with one win apiece.  Unlike other circuits with rich histories, Abu Dhabi’s has just gotten into the picture. One thing you should know is that Abu Dhabi is one of the richest countries in the world. You can therefore expect a world class reception from one of the finest hosts. Besides, there is a lot more to come from the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in future years.

Attractions for motorsport enthusiasts

As you take a break from the race or wait for the main event, there are several attractions to keep you busy. At Ferrari World, an indoor theme park, get a feel of speed as you ride the park’s rollercoaster. Alternatively, visit the landscaped gardens of Corniche. As you seat and enjoy refreshments at one of the cafes or restaurant, reflect on what an awesome Formula One season this has been.