F1 Season Kicks Off

  • F1 actions gets back under way this weekend. Photo: David Davies/PA Wire.

    Cloud amounts for Australia during the race tomorrow (Credit: MeteoGroup)

    Air temperature for Australia during the race tomorrow (Credit: MeteoGroup)

  • F1 Season Kicks Off
    19.03.2016 16:37

    This weekend sees the F1 circus start up all over again, with the first race of the season at the Albert Park street circuit in Melbourne, Australia. With new drivers, new cars and new rules everyone is wondering what will happen and more importantly how will the weather have an influence on who will claim that all important first win.

    What's gone on so far?

    Think of Australia in the summer and your mind's eye conjures up images of brilliant blue skies and glorious sunshine, as surfers play on the beach and people throw another shrimp on the barbie. However, both of Friday’s practice sessions were marred by inconsistent weather conditions, resulting in meaningful running being kept to a minimum. The first practice session was heavily affected by a cold front passing over the Albert Park street circuit, resulting in outbreaks of rain and strong gusty winds, which caught a number of drivers out. Whereas the second practice sessions was a disappointingly cloudy and damp affair as the cold front gradually cleared away. The temperature also noticeably decreased following  
    the passage of the cold front, with only a maximum air temperature of 17.7C for Melbourne. This inclement weather affected all teams but no more so than the new kids on the block, Haas F1 Team. “Today was one of those days” Team Principal Gunther Steiner for Haas F1 Team told the media after FP2, “these weather conditions that you get until the evening. You are not happy – because you haven’t done enough… I’m not just blaming the weather, you have to blame yourself. Today the weather was not helping”.

    However, as the new qualifying rule started to take place on Saturday’s qualifying session, the weather did start to improve, with the gusty winds from the day before subsiding during the morning. Although some isolated showers had been forecast, none actually fell on the circuit during the session with the cloud also breaking to give a few sunny spells. Therefore there was nothing to stop Lewis Hamilton taking the 50th pole position of his career.

    So what is in store for the all-important Sunday race?

    The weather looks set to be kind to the drivers tomorrow as the low pressure system that has been affecting the Melbourne area over the last couple of day moves away and high pressure begins to build in. So during the race itself, dry conditions are expected with largely sunny skies and only a few fair weather convective clouds forming.  
    With just a gentle south to south-easterly wind, plenty of sunshine and air temperatures ranging between 17 and 20 C, it will be pleasant for the on-watching spectators. Suggesting all of this and avoiding any mechanical issues, the victory will therefore fall to the best driver on the day.

    By: Chris Hogan