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F1 Australian Grand Prix: A detailed look at Melbourne's Albert Park Circuit

F1 Australian Grand Prix: A detailed look at Melbourne's Albert Park Circuit

F1 Australian Grand Prix: A detailed look at Melbourne's Albert Park Circuit

F1 Australian Grand Prix: A detailed look at Melbourne's Albert Park Circuit

Here's a detailed look at Melbourne's Albert Park circuit, home to the Australian Grand Prix since 1996.

The Albert Park Circuit is a legendary Australian venue steeped in F1 history. Since 1996, it has been the stage for wheel-to-wheel racing excitement at the Australian GP, and will continue to thrill fans until at least 2035.

READ MORE: RANKED: The best Australian F1 drivers in history

The high-speed parkland circuit has provided a dramatic backdrop for many memorable F1 duels. Notably, it's the launchpad where world champions like Lewis Hamilton, Kimi Raikkonen, and Fernando Alonso made their F1 debuts.

After a two-year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Australian GP returned to the calendar in 2022, and with it came a modified Albert Park circuit layout.

Now, let's delve into the details of the Albert Park Circuit and explore the changes implemented from the 2022 season onwards.

A closer look at the Albert Park Circuit

Albert Park is a 5.278-kilometre-long street circuit located around Albert Park Lake in Melbourne, Australia. It runs clockwise and consists of 14 turns.

The start/finish line is located on the 0.8km straight between Turn 14 and Turn 1. Turn 1 was widened by 2.5m in 2022 to provide multiple racing lines, and it is a right-hander that leads into the fast, sweeping left-hander of Turn 2.

Current Albert Park Circuit layout. Credit: F1

After Turn 2, drivers need to brake hard for the slow right-hander of Turn 3, which was widened by 4m and given a camber adjustment. They then take a quick right flick to set up for the tricky left-hander of Turn 4.

Turn 5 is a flat-out right-hander, followed by the right-hander of Turn 6, which was also widened by 7.5m to increase speed from around 149 km/h to 219 km/h. Drivers can go flat out through Turn 7 before taking another right-hander at Turn 8.

The biggest change made to the circuit was the removal of the chicane at Turns 9 and 10, located right after Turn 8. It has been replaced by the longest flat-out section, which makes for a run of 1.3km that culminates in a high-speed left-hander followed by a right-hander, now designated Turns 9 and 10 (formerly 11 and 12).

READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: Newey 'one hour' from forming all-champion F1 line up

Changes made to the old Albert Park Circuit layout. Credit: FIA

Turn 10 is a right-hand flick that leads into the technical section of the circuit. The once-tight entry of Turn 11 has been straightened and widened by 3.5m, making it a more challenging right-hander.

Another right-hander at Turn 12 and a sharp left follow at Turn 13, before the final right-hand bend hurls the drivers onto the pit straight.

The changes made to the circuit in 2022 were designed to improve overtaking opportunities. Longer straights, more racing lines, and a fourth DRS zone were added to Lakeside Drive, making Albert Park the circuit with the most DRS zones. These changes were successful, as the past two races saw a number of overtaking manoeuvres.

READ MORE: F1 Schedule 2024: Full calendar with all you need to know about every grand prix

Albert Park Circuit - key facts

Circuit length: 5.278km
Number of laps: 58
DRS zones: 4
Race distance: 306.124 km
Lap record: 1:19.813 - Charles Leclerc (2024)

Kings of the Albert Park Circuit

The Albert Park Circuit has witnessed some incredible racing over the years, and a number of drivers have stood out as masters of this unique track. Here are the top drivers with the most wins:

Michael Schumacher: 4 wins (2000, 2001, 2002, 2004)
Sebastian Vettel: 3 wins (2011, 2017, 2018)
Jenson Button: 3 wins (2009, 2010, 2012)
Lewis Hamilton: 2 wins (2008, 2015)
Kimi Raikkonen: 2 wins (2007, 2013)

Nico Rosberg and David Coulthard also won twice on the iconic Albert Park Circuit.

Australian Grand Prix FAQ

Is Albert Park a street circuit?

Yes, Albert Park is a street circuit. It utilises public roads around Albert Park Lake for the race.

Where is the Albert Park Circuit?

Albert Park Circuit is located around Albert Park Lake in Melbourne, Australia.

How long is the Albert Park Circuit?

Albert Park Circuit is 5.278 kilometres long.

What time is the Australian Grand Prix?

The 2024 Australian Grand Prix takes place on Sunday, March 24 at 3pm local time, which translates to 4am in the UK.

Who won the Australian Grand Prix 2023?

Max Verstappen won the 2023 Australian Grand Prix, with Lewis Hamilton in second and Fernando Alonso in third.

READ MORE: F1 on TV: The definitive guide to how to watch the 2024 season live

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