title.circuits

Interlagos

Interlagos

Autódromo José Carlos Pace, popularly known as Interlagos, is a Brazilian circuit found in Sao Paulo. The track's opening dates back to 1940, but no Formula 1 races took place at that time. From 1973, the circuit has been on the calendar, although it missed out on some seasons. 

Interlagos

Autódromo José Carlos Pace, popularly known as Interlagos, is a Brazilian circuit found in Sao Paulo. The track's opening dates back to 1940, but no Formula 1 races took place at that time. From 1973, the circuit has been on the calendar, although it missed out on some seasons. 

While seven races could be seen between 1973 and 1980, the FIA decided not to return after René Arnoux's victory. Many seasons then passed without a GP in Brazil, but that changed in 1990. Since then, several famous drivers won the Brazilian race, including Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher and David Coulthard. In recent years, it was mainly Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton who stood on the top step of the podium.

Track characteristics

The race track in Brazil is known above all for the many slopes found on the track, which does not make it easy for teams to find the right set-up. Moreover, the track had a bumpy surface in the past. It resulted in drivers experiencing many problems to keep the car from damage.

Besides the bumpy road surface and elevation changes, there is another important element that makes Interlagos difficult to drive on. This is because the laps are anti-clockwise, which means drivers can expect hefty hits on the other side of their necks at the longer corners. It makes the track physically demanding for a Formula 1 driver.

Iconic races

The most eye-catching race was that of 2016. Hamilton was the winner of that Grand Prix, but Verstappen made the most impression. The Dutchman had to make an extra pit stop and ended up in 16th place, after which he showed that he was capable of great things in the rain. Indeed, Verstappen drove to third place that day, surprising friend and foe alike with a podium finish.

In the 1990s, Interlagos stood out the most. Indeed, back then, Ayrton Senna was active and experienced the best years of his career. It resulted in great title fights, with competitors struggling to beat him in his home country. In both 1991 and 1993, the Brazilian managed to cross the line first at the end of the race. His compatriot Felipe Massa was also successful at the circuit twice in the past.