1099th F1 GRAND PRIX | 3rd SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX | 41st GRAND PRIX AT INTERLAGOS
2022 POLESITTER: KEVIN MAGNUSSEN | 2022 WINNER: GEORGE RUSSELL
Interlagos has been the scene of plenty of title deciders in Formula 1’s recent history. The 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix is set to take place on November 3-5.
2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX: WEEKEND SCHEDULE
Friday 3rd November
Free Practice 1 – 11:30am Local Time / 2:30pm UK Time
Qualifying – 3:00pm Local Time / 6:00pm UK Time
Saturday 4th November
Sprint Shootout – 11:00am Local Time / 2:00pm UK Time
Sprint – 3:30pm Local Time / 6:30pm UK Time
Sunday 5th November
The 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix – 2:00pm Local Time / 5:00pm UK Time
2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX: WEEKEND MILESTONES
This will be the 50th time that Formula 1 has raced in Brazil. The 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix will be the 40th World Championship Grand Prix to be held at Interlagos. The venue becomes only the seventh to have hosted 40 races.
At the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix, Brazil becomes the 11th nation to have hosted 50 rounds of the World Championship.
If Lewis Hamilton wins the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix, he will equal Michael Schumacher as the driver with the most wins at Interlagos. Schumacher won in Brazil on four occasions in his career.
Victory for George Russell at the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix would make him the sixth driver to have recorded consecutive wins at Interlagos. The other drivers to have done so are Emerson Fittipaldi, Michael Schumacher, Mika Hakkinen, Juan Pablo Montoya and Nico Rosberg.
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE 2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX
WHAT HAS CHANGED AT THE CIRCUIT SINCE LAST YEAR?
There have been a number of changes at Interlagos since last year. A TecPro barrier has been replaced at Turn 1 , the track has been resurfaced between Turns 6 & 7, new guardrails and fences have been installed at Turns 9, 10 & 11 and all artificial grass at the track has been renewed.
HOW MANY DRS ZONES WILL THERE BE AT THE 2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX?
There will be two DRS zones at the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix. There were also two DRS zones at the 2022 Sao Paulo Grand Prix.
INTERLAGOS TRACK GUIDE
Since its arrival on the calendar in 1973, the Interlagos track in Sao Paulo, Brazil has hosted some dramatic races. The passionate fans together with the old school nature of the track layout always make the Brazilian Grand Prix weekend one to remember.
The Interlagos track is situated nine miles from the city centre of Sao Paulo. The neighbourhood had originally been plotting a racing circuit back in the 1920s, but this didn’t come to fruition for quite some time. Brazil’s history with motor racing began in 1934, with races on the Gavea circuit in Rio de Janeiro. Sao Paulo itself held a street race in 1936, but this was marred by a crash which resulted in the deaths of six spectators.
The plot of land which the Interlagos track is situated on – Interlagos meaning ‘between two lakes’ – had been set aside in 1926 for building houses on. However, such was the environment, the plot of land laid empty for years as it was unsuitable for the houses to be built. The financial situation due to the stock market crash in 1929 was also a factor in the area laying dormant. It instead became home to a demanding race track. The idea for a permanent circuit in the area was mooted in 1938, and was built by a construction company named Sanson over the next two years.
F1’s first venture into Brazil came in 1972 – the same year which the country had their first Brazilian F1 World Champion – and Carlos Reutemann won a non-championship round. The event proved Interlagos’ capability of holding a race, and in 1973 the circuit became home to the Brazilian Grand Prix.
WHO WILL BE IN THE 2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX PRESS CONFERENCES?
The world’s media will have the opportunity to talk to the drivers on Thursday. The drivers appearing in the press conference are:
Daniel Ricciardo (AlphaTauri)
Lance Stroll (Aston Martin)
Kevin Magnussen (Haas)
Lando Norris (Mclaren)
Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
Valtteri Bottas (Alta Romeo)
Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)
Carlos Sainz (Ferrari)
Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
Logan Sargeant (Williams)
The media will also be talking to prominent members of Formula 1’s teams on Friday. The team members who will appear in the press conference are: Alessandro Alunni Bravi (Alfa Romeo), Tom McCullough (Aston Martin), Diego Ioverno (Ferrari) and Mario Isola (Pirelli).
WHO WILL BE THE RACE DIRECTOR AT THE 2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX?
Niels Wittich will be the race director at the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix.
WHO WILL BE THE DRIVER STEWARD AT THE 2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX?
Each weekend a former Formula 1 driver, or a driver from another prominent series of motorsport, joins the stewards to help judge any incidents from a drivers’ perspective. The Driver Steward this weekend is Vitantonio Liuzzi.
WHICH TYRE COMPOUNDS WILL BE USED AT THE 2023 SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX?
Pirelli have announced the C2, C3 and C4 tyre compounds will be used at the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix. The C2, C3 and C4 compounds were also used in 2022.
WHAT HAPPENED LAST TIME AT THE SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX?
A thrilling race weekend at Interlagos saw Magnussen and Haas take their maiden pole position, while Russell dominated the race to take his first Formula 1 victory.
Wet weather crept in over Interlagos as Friday’s qualifying session began. The session began in wet conditions, but drivers had switched to slick compounds by the end of Q1. While Q2 stayed mostly dry, showers towards the end of the session set up a thrilling Q3.
Kevin Magnussen set the fastest time early on in the session, which was red flagged just 60 seconds later as George Russell beached his Mercedes in the gravel in worsening conditions. The rain continued and when the session resumed no drivers were able to improve their lap time – meaning Magnussen and the Haas team took their first ever pole position in Formula 1.
Magnussen started Saturday’s Sprint at Interlagos from the front of the grid and was able to hold off Max Verstappen in the opening laps. The Red Bull took the lead on Lap 3. Behind them, the two Alpine drivers made contact multiple times on the opening lap and both dropped out of the top ten in the final order as a result.
Alpine weren’t the only team with unhappy team-mates, with Lance Stroll causing team-mate Sebastian Vettel to take avoiding action. The incident earned Stroll a ten-second penalty. Back at the front, Magnussen began to drop down the order with George Russell and Carlos Sainz passing the Haas in quick succession. Magnussen eventually finished the Sprint eighth.
On Lap 12 of 24, Russell went wheel-to-wheel with Verstappen for the lead. He couldn’t immediately find a way by but, after a three lap scrap, Russell took the lead and with it secured the pole position grid slot for Sunday’s race. Verstappen soon came under pressure from Sainz. The Ferrari passed and the Red Bull picked up front wing damage. Lewis Hamilton capitalised and moved up to third – which became a front row start thanks a power unit penalty for Sainz.
The Mercedes took a healthy lead at the start, while Friday’s star Magnussen was eliminated on the opening lap in a collision with Daniel Ricciardo. That prompted a Safety Car deployment. At the restart, Verstappen made a move on Hamilton for second place only to run out of road and earn himself a time penalty.
McLaren’s bad day continued as Lando Norris made contact with Charles Leclerc – the Ferrari driver lucky to be able to continue in the race. Norris also picked up a penalty for the incident but would retire later in the race with gearbox issues.
Hamilton dropped down the field in his incident with Verstappen but soon made up positions and took the lead when his team-mate pitted. The more experienced Mercedes driver had to pass Sergio Perez on track for second place.
A further Safety Car period for Norris’ stoppage enabled Sainz – one of few drivers on a three-stop strategy – to make an effective final stop, putting him in contention for a podium finish. The Spaniard passed Perez with eight laps remaining.
Out at the front, Russell held off team-mate Hamilton to take the maiden victory of his Formula 1 career. Mercedes recorded their first 1-2 finish in over two years, while British drivers finished first and second for the first time since the 2010 Canadian Grand Prix. This was Mercedes’ only victory in the 2022 season.
Verstappen made up positions in the final stages as Perez dropped position in the later laps. Verstappen got ahead of his team-mate and was expected to let him back past at the final corner to aid the Mexican’s battle for second in the standings. Verstappen failed to oblige.
WHAT’S THE FASTEST EVER LAP AT THE SAO PAULO GRAND PRIX?
Attending the 2023 Sao Paulo Grand Prix? Learn more about visiting Interlagos in the F1Destinations Travel Guide.