The Autódromo José Carlos Pace is the last track on the 2019 calendar that Alexander Albon has yet to compete on, but the Thai driver says this circuit is one of those he has been looking forward to the most.
The Aston Martin Red Bull Racing rookie has enjoyed a positive start to his career with the Milton Keynes-based outfit and moved up to sixth in the Drivers’ Championship thanks to his recovery drive to fifth in the United States Grand Prix last time out, having been forced to pit for a new front wing after first lap contact.
With the weather always unpredictable in Sao Paulo, Albon is expecting an exciting weekend of racing as he bids to end his maiden Formula 1 campaign on a high with a maiden podium finish and potentially a 2020 Red Bull contract.
“Sao Paolo looks very cool and it’s a drivers track which takes you back to the old school of racing which I enjoy,” said Albon. “Interlagos has a lot of history and it’s one of the circuits I’ve been looking forward to most this year to drive.
“Obviously I’ve never been before but from what I understand the weather is always going to be tricky there which always makes for an exciting weekend.”
Team-mate Max Verstappen was on course for victory at Interlagos twelve months ago only for the Dutchman to collide with Esteban Ocon at turn two as the Frenchman bid to unlap himself, but the twenty-two-year-old has always finished inside the points in Brazil.
Verstappen says that despite the track being so short – the length of the circuit is only 2.677 miles with a lap time under seventy-seconds – it is a lot of fun to drive, and he points at the importance of Qualifying with overtaking not that easy.
“Interlagos is a short track but it’s good and a lot of fun to drive,” said Verstappen. “It has a good combination of corners and it’s also anti-clockwise so it’s a bit heavier on the neck.
“Qualifying is pretty important there as overtaking is not so easy. The track is also quite hard on tyres so you need to look after them throughout the race.
“As we saw in 2016, crazy weather can happen too! Brazil has a lot of passionate fans who live and breathe F1 so it’s always great to see that and it makes for a great atmosphere.”