With the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the 2016 Formula 1 season comes to an end and it has been a long season for McLaren. However, while the year may have started off quite badly, the Woking based squad has made a lot of improvements throughout the season with every day spent together helping them grow stronger.
The Yas Marina circuit, home to this weekend’s season finale, has a unique layout with a traditional race and street-like circuit combined into one, unlike the several previous races. Each sector is very different, from slow 90-degree turns to full-throttle straights, so it will no doubt be another busy weekend for Fernando Alonso as he works on setting up both the power unit and chassis to get the maximum out of the package at his disposal.
The goal is to end his season on a positive note, and enjoy the twilight race in Abu Dhabi…
“The faster first sector and the two long straights in the middle sector at Yas Marina mean that it isn’t a track that will naturally suit our package, but over the course of Friday we’ll work hard to dial in the car to make the most of what we have and extract as much performance as possible,” Alonso said.
“It’s an interesting track to set the car up for, as although it’s in the desert, the track temperature cools a lot during the course of the race as we reach twilight, so the tyre conditions and grip levels are constantly evolving as we reach the chequered flag. It’s a really unique place and a great circuit to end the season at, and I hope we can push for a positive end to the year.”
“I enjoy racing in Abu Dhabi every year. Not just because it’s become synonymous with the end of the season, but there’s a unique atmosphere there – a combination of the ‘end-of-term’ feeling, anticipation ahead of the winter development push and the buzz from the fans as we go racing for the final time in 2016.”
“From the cockpit, it’s incredible to race at twilight and watch the light fade as you complete lap after lap. It brings a new dimension to the spectacle and makes the whole weekend really enjoyable.”