Alex and Logan set their sights on Shanghai

Published on
17 Apr 2024
Est. reading time
3 Min

Read what our two drivers and Head of Vehicle Performance have had to say ahead of the 2024 Chinese Grand Prix

For the first time since 2019, Formula 1 is heading to China. The Shanghai International Circuit made its debut on the calendar 20 years ago, but for many, this will be their first Chinese Grand Prix experience.
One of those experiencing the 16-turn venue for the first time will be Logan Sargeant, who will have just one practice session to acclimatise himself on Friday before it’s straight into Sprint Qualifying.
“I’m excited to be racing in China for the first time,” Sarge shared.
“I’ve been on the simulator back at Grove between races to get to grips with the track.
“Since it's the first Sprint weekend of the season, we’re very limited on running before we get underway with Sprint Qualifying.
“Like everyone else, we need to make the most of the one-hour practice session to understand the circuit and set up the car the best we can.
“I’m sure the weekend will provide opportunities with it being a Sprint, so we just need to put ourselves in the right place to take them.”
Alex Albon’s one and only race in China was F1’s 1,000th Grand Prix, with the No23 driving from the pit lane to P10 at the chequered flag in 2019.
“Whilst it’s been a tough few weeks for the team, everyone has been working tirelessly at the factory to get us back up and ready for China, so I’m immensely thankful for their hard work,” Albono commented.
“Looking forward, we head to China for the first Sprint event of the season and to a circuit many of us haven’t driven at in over 5 years, and for Logan, it will be the first time.
“In preparation, we’ve both been busy in the simulator, working hard to better understand how the car might perform around the circuit, with a tricky first sector as well as one of the longest straights on the calendar.
“Being a Sprint weekend with limited practice sessions, we’ll put our focus on taking advantage of the format and try to capitalise on this limited running.”
Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance, spoke about the challenges facing the team with just a single practice session, as well as touching on the hard work that has gone on back at Grove to get set for this weekend.”
“Coming back to Shanghai for the first Sprint competition of 2024 is a fascinating challenge,” Dave said.
“The circuit retains its excellent mix of corners as well as the very long back straight. The layout is demanding for the drivers, cars and tyres with the opening cornering complex of T1/2/3 being a tricky start to the lap.
“The fast T7/8 combination continues to work the tyres ahead of the slower section which ultimately leads to the back straight.
“The tyre compounds are from the middle of Pirelli’s range and should suit the circuit well with C4 requiring some management but C2 offering a lot more robustness at the expense of some raw pace.
“Tackling this circuit for the first time since 2019 and having only a single practice session ahead of the Sprint sessions won’t be easy, but it is an opportunity that we relish.
“For 2024, the regulations for the Sprint competitions have been updated and we will look to use these updates to get the most out of FW46 throughout the competitive sessions.
“Preparations for the weekend have gone well with both drivers completing productive work in the simulator and the entire team working hard to replenish our stock of parts.
“Despite the ongoing work to recover from recent attrition, we have also been able to bring an aerodynamic update to this event.
“Alex will run with a revised HALO fairing and both cars will use the new front wing that we introduced in Japan.
“It's great to be back in China and we can’t wait to take on the combined challenge of the circuit, the event format and the Shanghai weather.”
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