BRAZILIAN GP – FRIDAY PRACTICE
First Practice Session: 1:09.828 Position: 5, Laps: 38
Second Practice Session: 1:09.743 Position: 3, Laps: 37
“I’m pretty happy with Friday. For what we’ve got here we looked competitive. The long runs looked okay but the Mercs looked really strong. We can definitely find a little bit more for tomorrow but I don’t think we’re far off and we don’t have to make many changes tonight. It’s never a circuit where we have dominated in the past so to be close to Ferrari and at least in the fight with them seems positive. I’d like some rain for Qualifying tomorrow and I can try and fight for pole. I know if I get it I won’t start there because of my penalty, but anyway it would be good to start 11th for the race. That’s my target.”
First Practice session: 1:09.750, Position: 4, Laps: 31
Second Practice Session: 1:09.886 Position: 5, Laps: 38
“My Friday has been ok. It could have been a bit better and we still need to improve the balance, but in general it was a decent practice day. I was struggling for grip this morning and we managed to improve that a bit this afternoon but there is still more work to be done. On the short run it was not ideal on the Supersoft but we are not too far off on the long runs. Of course I always want to go faster and Mercedes are quicker than us at the moment. We need to make improvements before tomorrow because we know that in Qualifying they will step up their engine. I think we need to be at least the same speed or faster than Mercedes in the final practice to have a chance of getting on the front row of the grid.”
The Big Short
Interlagos might be little but, thanks to elevation changes, good overtaking opportunities and weird weather, its attraction as a race venue is large. Indeed, F1’s shortest permanent venue is proof positive that good things come in small packages. Here’s a few other pocket rockets…
1. Martinsville Speedway – While Interlagos is 4.309 km, and thus the shortest permanent facility on our calendar, the shortest track used by NASCAR for Cup races is Martinsville Speedway. The teeny, tiny oval, founded in 1947 by the late H Clay Earles, is just 0.526 miles (0.847 km long). Despite its miniscule size compared with series behemoths such as 2.5-mile Indianapolis and the biggest of all Cup ovals 2.66-mile Talladega Superspeedway, Martinsville is the only track to have hosted Cup Series races every year since the division’s inception in 1949.
2. The Mayfly – While bowhead whales can live to around 200 years and Ming the sea clam is in the record books as the longest lived animal ever recorded at 507 years old upon its death in 2006, the poor mayfly has the shortest lifespan of any animal on Earth at just 24 hours. The little creatures spend most of that time as nymphs before maturing and then their sole purpose is reproduction. A life well lived.
3. Neutrino speeds – In 2011, particle physicists from the HW Wills Physics Laboratory in Bristol and the Indian Institute of Technology were stunned when they discovered that neutrinos could apparently travel faster than light, breaking the universal speed limit proposed by Einstein. They were later proved wrong but the abstract (the summary) of their extraordinary findings and the reasons for them did claim a place in the annals of science as the shortest ever. After positing the title question as “Can apparent superluminal neutrino speeds be explained as a quantum weak measurement?” their abstract succinctly delivered the answer, “probably not.”
4. Westray to Papa Westray – For most, the easiest way to get between these two islands in Scotland’s Orkney chain is to take the short – very short – flight between the two land masses. Clocking in at 80 seconds, the hop from island to island (which are separated by just 1.7 miles) is the shortest scheduled passenger flight in the world. Scottish airline Loganair has been flying the route since 1967 and charges around £20 or US$26 for the service.
5. Earache Records – in 2013, to celebrate Record Store Day, heavy metal label Earache Records released the world’s shortest album. The record, pressed on 5-inch vinyl but presented on a gatefold 12-inch sleeve, is just 83 seconds long. It does, however, contains gems such as what some suggest is s the world’s shortest song, the 1.9s-long ‘You Suffer’ by Napalm Death. The longest track on the record is ‘Street Sweeper’ by the wonderful Insect Warfare.