7 Interesting Facts About Formula 1
There are so many things one should/could know about Formula 1. However, we decided to pick what we think are 7 most interesting facts about what many call the "world's biggest circus."
The Formula One series originates with the European Grand Prix Motor Racing of the 1920s and 1930s, with "formula" being defined as a set of rules which all participants' cars must meet. Formula One was a new formula agreed after World War II during 1946 and the first world championship race was held at Silverstone, United Kingdom during 1950. A championship for constructors followed during 1958. National championships existed in South Africa and the UK in the 1960s and 1970s.
Yup, Formula One cars are the fastest circuit-racing cars in the world, racing at speeds of up to 360 km/h (220 mph) with engines limited in performance to a maximum of 18,000 revolutions per minute (RPM). The cars are capable of lateral acceleration in excess of 5 g in corners.
Modern Formula One cars are mid-engined open cockpit, open wheel single-seaters, with chassis made largely of carbon-fibre composites. As a result, the vehicle is light -- it weighs only 640 kg (1411 lbs) -- but extremely stiff and strong.
In the event of an incident that risks the safety of competitors or trackside race marshals, a safety car may be deployed. This in effect suspends the race, with drivers following the safety car around the track at its speed in race order, while overtaking is not permitted. Mercedes-Benz supplies Mercedes-AMG models to Formula One to use as the safety cars.
The inaugural 1950 world championship season comprised of only seven races, while there were 19 of them in 2011 due to postponement of the Bahrain Grand Prix. Argentina hosted the first South American grand prix in 1953, and Morocco hosted the first African World Championship race in 1958. Asia (Japan in 1976) and Oceania (Australia in 1985) followed.
However, it's important to add that Grands Prix are not always held on the same circuit every year. The British Grand Prix, for example, alternated between Brands Hatch and Silverstone from 1963 to 1986. The only other race to have been included in every season is the Italian Grand Prix.
There are two type of circuits - temporary and permanent, with the latter costing much more to build. For instance, the Shanghai circuit cost over $300 million, though it can generate revenue all year round from leasing the track for private races and other races -- the owners are hoping to break-even by 2014. Not all circuits make money though; Albert Park, for example, lost $32 million in 2007.
Formula One is profitable for most parties involved -- TV channels make profits from broadcasting the races, while teams get a slice of the money from the sale of broadcasting rights and from the sponsor's logos on their cars.
In March 2007, F1 Racing published its annual estimates of spending by Formula One teams, which totaled at $2.9 billion, spread across 11 teams.
German Formula One racing driver is a seven-time World Champion and is widely regarded as one of the greatest F1 drivers of all time. Schumacher holds many of the formula's driver records, including most championships, race victories, fastest laps, pole positions, points scored and most races won in a single season. In 2002 he became the only driver in Formula One history to finish in the top three in every race of a season and then also broke the record for most consecutive podium finishes. Moreover, the official Formula One website says he is "statistically the greatest driver the sport has ever seen".
And that wraps up our story. Of course, you are free to add what we've missed in the comments form below. ;)