A pursuit track style will be used for this weekends ROC Mexico that marks the 29th running of the Race of Champions. The event held at Mexico City’s Foro Sol will not feature a track crossing or crossover bridge as has been common in recent years.
Similar to the style used at the London Olympic Stadium in 2015, when Sebastian Vettel won the crown, the track will be one of the longest in ROC history. The drivers will complete one full lap of the circuit which, as per tradition, will see them pass the finish line twice.
Foro Sol, perhaps better known for being the ‘stadium section’ of the Mexican Grand Prix, will see the start/finish line located opposite the grandstands on the outside of turn 13, near to where the drivers park their cars for the podium celebration.
The end of both drivers laps will conclude with a hairpin, though for the driver on the outside, they will also get a fifty metre dash, while the driver on the inside will have a shorter run to the line.
Vettel will return to the competition this year along with defending champion David Coulthard, making his fifteenth appearance. Elsewhere, RallyCross champion Johan Kristoffersson will join 9-time Le Mans winner Tom Kristensen, who will be looking to finally clinch the title after finishing runner-up five times.
Pierre Gasly will join Vettel in the F1 representation, while former Haas driver Esteban Gutierrez leads a three team Mexican assault. Formula E champion Lucas di Grassi and Indycar stars Josef Newgarden and Ryan Hunter-Reay also make up the 20 driver roster with Andy Priaulx joining Coulthard in Team United Kingdom.
The Groups for the event was announced on Wednesday.
ROC President Frederik Johnson said; “Our new pursuit-style track was a big hit when we introduced it at London’s Olympic Stadium three years ago. The tight finishes it generates are spectacular, with the two cars flying towards the finishing line from opposite directions.
“The emphasis remains firmly on driver skill alone and the finishes will be as close as ever, with races often decided only by fractions of a second.”