Everything you need to know about Brazil, the racetrack and the Formula 1 race at the weekend

Alles wat je moet weten over Brazilië, het circuit en het Formule 1-raceweekend

The final stages of the season are approaching and before heading to the usual finish in Abu Dhabi, we will stop in Brazil for a ride in the famous and infamous Autodromo, Jose Carlos Pace. It’s time to take a closer look at the land of samba!


As usual, we first delve into the country in which we will be staying next weekend: Brazil. We also look at a piece of history, culture, geography, and culture. With an area of ​​8.5 million square kilometers, which is nearly half the size of South America, the giant country is the largest country on the continent. In addition, the country is the largest in the world after Russia, Canada, the United States and China. The capital is called Brasilia, but the largest city in the country is São Paulo, which is the scene of this weekend.

Brazil, like the United States, was originally inhabited by Indians. In 1500 the Portuguese navigator Pedro Alvares Cabral arrived in Brazil, after which the country was declared a Portuguese colony. Since 1530 the colonization has already begun and the Portuguese took power in the country, so Portuguese became the official language in the country. The Netherlands also has a history in Brazil, where the seven United Republic of the Netherlands had something to say in the country between 1630 and 1654. Eventually the Portuguese took power again. Independence was finally declared in 1822 and was officially recognized by Portugal three years later.

Brazilian legend Ayrton Senna

At the beginning of 2023, the leadership of the country will pass to Lula da Silva, after Jair Bolsonaro has controlled since 2019, but he will have to relinquish power after an eventful election. At the last census in 2020, the country had a population of 2,171,973, nearly all of whom speak Portuguese. In addition to Brasilia and São Paulo, Brazil has several large cities in the form of Rio de Janeiro, the former capital Salvador and Fortaleza. In addition, the country covers large parts of (tropical) rainforests. The country has the seventh largest economy in the world and subsists mainly on raw materials, agricultural products, clothing production, cars and planes for example. Despite the large economy, there is a large income disparity in the country, which makes the difference between the rich and the poor enormous.

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Sao Paulo, the podium next weekend

Therefore, this weekend the Formula 1 circus will settle in the largest city in the country: São Paulo. The city is one of the largest urban agglomerations in the world. The exact numbers are unknown, but during the last census in 2010, there were about 22 million residents in and around the giant city. Many of the greats of motorsports saw the light in São Paulo. Think names like Ayrton Senna, Felipe Massa, Emerson Fittipaldi, and Helio Castroneves.

View more of Interlagos and São Paulo

São Paulo itself is a great source of culture. The Museu de Arte de São Paulo is one of the largest and most important museums in Latin America and houses many great works by painters such as Vincent van Gogh and Pablo Picasso. São Paulo Cathedral is also a special building and is definitely worth seeing. Football is the most popular sport in the city and with famous clubs like Palmeiras, Corinthians and São Paulo having football, it is clear. Motorsport is also very popular among the illustrious circuit of Interlagos and many of the legendary drivers.

This weekend’s podium: Autodromo José Carlos Pace

The circuit in São Paulo is one of the most legendary in motorsport. The Brazilian Grand Prix has been held here since 1973, and many heroic moments have occurred since then. The circuit was named in 1985 after Brazilian Carlos Pace, who won his only Formula 1 victory at this circuit in 1975 and died in a plane crash in 1977.

Famous Sina Bend

There are usually 71 laps on a 4.309 kilometer circuit. Michael Schumacher is the most successful driver in Autódromo José Carlos Pace, and the German has won four times in Sao Paulo: in 1994, 1995, 2000 and 2002. He is closely followed by his compatriot Sebastian Vettel, he won in 2010, 2013 and 2017 The circuit is characterized by many bumps, which Formula 1 cars often make it difficult to reach the bottom plates. In addition, the circuit with the legendary ‘S’ do Senna turn 1 hosts one of the most beautiful turns on the calendar.

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Unforgettable memories

Since the Brazilian Grand Prix is ​​reasonably often held at the end of the season, several tournaments have been scheduled at Interlagos. The first that immediately comes to mind is Lewis Hamilton’s first world title in 2008. The legendary race at Interlagos saw favorite Felipe Massa win at home on a rainy day, which seemed to clear the roof of the Brazilian crowd and get the party started. Briefly broke into a Ferrari pit box.

2008 World Champion Lewis Hamilton

However, nothing came of it. For a long time Hamilton seemed to be falling short of the world title nets, just as he did in 2007. The Briton struggled during the race as he was not allowed to take fifth place. This looked like it was going to happen, but due to a sudden downpour towards the end of the race, it was Timo Glock who barely managed to find any grip on his tires, allowing Hamilton to pass him into the last corner to claim his first world title, much to the chagrin of the Brazilian fans.

Max Verstappen celebrates his win in 2019

Max Verstappen has also been introduced to Interlagos Witchcraft multiple times. For example, in 2016 the Dutchman drove one of his best races ever in wet conditions, once again showing his talent at Red Bull. With great driving he was able to drive towards P3 in Red Bull from behind and also showed one of the best examples of car control ever by keeping his car off the wall when entering the straight. In 2018, he looked on his way to victory before Esteban Ocon decided to take a lap behind him, sending Verstappen off the track and having to settle for second.

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Back to the present

Although the sting is now gone from both world championships, there is of course still plenty of fun things to do during the Grand Prix in Sao Paulo, for example, we will drive again according to the sprint format and Verstappen will look for a number the win. Fifteen of the season. Hamilton will also be looking for his first win of the season and what better place to do that than in the country where he recently became an honorary citizen?

Paolo Grand Prix schedule

Friday 11 November

First free practice: 4:30 p.m.

Qualification: 8:00 p.m.

Saturday 12 November

Second Free Practice: 4:30 p.m.

Sprint race: 8:30 p.m.

Sunday 13 November

Race: 7 p.m

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