Mexican Grand Prix Preview

With Lewis Hamilton on the brink of claiming his fifth Drivers’ Championship to date, we here at Karting Nation are taking a look at this season’s Mexican Grand Prix. With Hamilton set to equal Argentine legend Juan Manuel Fangio’s championship record, he leads the 2018 driver standings with a total of 346 points. His German rival, Sebastian Vettel, lies behind him in second place – 70 points behind.

With three races left including this one, a win for the German driver in Mexico this weekend will mean that Hamilton will require just a seventh placed finish to be crowned world champion. If Vettel fails to win at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez this weekend, then Hamilton will be crowned champion regardless of where he ends up. So, read on as Karting Nation takes you through our preview for the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix.

What Time Does The 2018 Mexican Grand Prix Start?

UK F1 fans will be pleased to hear that the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix will start at 19:10 GMT on Sunday 28th October, so you’ll be able to finish off your weekend with some Mexican GP action!

If you are, like us, always after an additional hit of racing action over the course of the weekend, then you’ll be able to tune in to the qualifying race which takes place on Saturday 27th October at 19:00 GMT. You’ll even be able to catch the practice rounds which begin today at 16:00 GMT, with practice 2 starting at 20:00 GMT later today and finally, practice 3 at 16:00 GMT on Saturday 27th October.

History of the Mexican Grand Prix

The Mexican Grand Prix is a fairly new race, having been introduced to the F1 calendar in 1962. Since then, it has been a fairly intermittent fixture on the calendar, having been held as a championship event in 1963-1970 and again in 1986-1992. The Grand Prix then returned in 2015 at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez in Mexico City. The event has been held a total of 19 times over the years at two different locations, the other track being the Magdalena Mixhuca circuit in Mexico City.

After the latest absence between 1993 and 2014, Bernie Ecclestone announced that he had signed a 5-year deal for the Hermanos Rodríguez track to host the Mexican Grand Prix. This was after a substantial refurbishment and modernisation of the track and facilities in order to bring it up to current F1 working standards. Like many other tracks, German engineer Hermann Tilke was hired to spruce things up for the return to Mexico in 2015. And spruce things up he did – turbo F1 cars managed to reach top speeds in excess of 230mph down the main straight. A quick track indeed.

Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez Grand Prix Circuit is 4.3km (2.7 mi) in length, and the race has a grand total of 71 laps. With 110,000 capacity inside the track, there’s guaranteed to be a world class atmosphere when the lights turn green on Sunday.

Over the years, Lotus are the constructor to have had the most wins with four. Behind them, trail McLaren and Williams with three wins a piece and Ferrari and Mercedes with two wins each. These standings could all change this weekend, of course. In terms of individual drivers, British legend Jim Clark leads the way with a total of two wins in 1963 and 1967. Since then, Nigel Mansell and French legend Alain Prost have both managed to win two times each throughout their F1 careers.

Who Won The 2017 Mexican Grand Prix?

Last year in Mexico City, Sebastian Vettel was quickest in the qualifying rounds, as he started the race in pole position. However, the German driver was unable to hold on to win the race, as Red Bull’s Max Verstappen finished the race in first place on the winner’s podium with a time of 1:36:26.552. Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas finished in second +19.678 seconds behind, with fellow Finn Kimi Räikkönen coming in third with a time of +54.007.

With Lewis Hamilton coming in ninth place and Sebastian Vettel in fourth place, it meant that Hamilton was crowned with the World Championship for the forth time in his career. With a similar situation bound to arise this weekend, can he make it five?

Who Is Likely To Win The 2018 Mexican Grand Prix?

The only two drivers to have won the Mexican Grand Prix from the current crop of drivers are Red Bull’s Max Verstappen (in 2017) and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton (in 2016). If it’s likely to be duel for top spot on the podium, it might well be between these two drivers. However, Ferrari’s Kimi Räikkönen could also be fighting for first place, as he managed to come in third in last year’s race.

When constructors are concerned, it’s McLaren and Williams who have the most wins at this event. It’s common knowledge that these teams really aren’t what they used to be, and it’s very unlikely that these two teams will be remotely close to the podium come Sunday.

With Hamilton on top form and with the championship as his motivation, he could well storm to victory in Mexico this weekend. Similarly, this could motivate German Sebastian Vettel, who – if he wins – has the very slight chance of catching the British driver up. But, is it all too little, too late?

Final Thoughts

So, that concludes our 2018 Mexican Grand Prix preview for this season. This important race could potentially be a championship-deciding one, so don’t forget that you can catch the race live from Mexico City this Sunday 28th October from 19:10 GMT.


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