There has been just one previous Formula 1 race held on 11th October – the 2015 Russian Grand Prix.
The 2015 Russian Grand Prix race marked the second running of the Russian Grand Prix at the Sochi Autodrom. There were two milestones over the weekend: Red Bull recorded their 200th race entry (though it was their 199th start due to them not partaking in the 2005 U.S. Grand Prix), while Fernando Alonso entered his 250th Grand Prix (but made his 249th start, for the same reason).
The weekend got off to a bad start with diesel being spilled on the track, preventing cars from doing much running in the first practice session. Drivers emerged on intermediate tyres due to the amount of water which had been used in an attempt to clear the oil. The same tyres would be needed in the afternoon session, as it rained.
Saturday was notable for Carlos Sainz’s huge crash in Free Practice 3. Suffering a 46G impact, the Spaniard’s Toro Rosso became embedded under the tyre barriers. He was transported to hospital, but was uninjured and took part in the race on the following day. After the race, Sainz said that he suffered with dizziness in the opening stages of the Grand Prix.
Sainz’s crash was not the only big hit of the weekend, as Romain Grosjean also suffered a large impact during the Grand Prix. At the front, Nico Rosberg, who had started from pole, retired after seven laps due to a stuck throttle. He dropped to third in the Drivers’ Championship as a result, with Sebastian Vettel moving up to second.
Lewis Hamilton won, but the main action was in the battle for third place. Sergio Perez had held the position thanks to an early pit stop, but with his tyre life fading, Kimi Raikkonen and Valtteri Bottas both passed the Force India. But the two Finns collided on the penultimate lap, handing the final podium spot back to Perez. Despite only one car finishing, Mercedes secured the Constructors’ Championship for the second year in succession.
Header image: kremlin.ru
After graduating in 2015 with a First Class honours degree in English Language and Literature, Nicky Haldenby, a lifelong fan of Formula 1, founded the Lights Out F1 Blog in 2016. The blog has become a firm fan-favourite, delving deep into the sport’s history books and lifting the cover on unusual F1 statistics.
Nicky also writes at F1Destinations and Motorsport Guides and can be heard as the resident stats man on the 2 Soft Compounds Podcast. His work has appeared on WTF1, BadgerGP, motorsport.com, Sky Sports F1 and BBC Radio 5 Live. Nicky is also the host of the F1 Rewind Podcast.