The penultimate round of the 2022 Formula 1 season is set to take place this weekend, with the Brazilian Grand Prix also playing host to the third and final Sprint Race of the year.
The race at Interlagos is one of the most eagerly anticipated Grand Prix of the year, with the twisty and undulating nature of the Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace circuit proving to be a welcome challenge for both drivers and teams.
Despite both championships being settled, the upcoming race in Brazil should prove to be an exciting affair, with second place in both the Drivers’ and Constructors’ Championships up for grabs.
Red Bull’s Sergio Perez leads Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc by five points in the driver standings, though with Red Bull on a nine-race win streak, the advantage should lie with the Mexican.
In fact, in recent races, Ferrari’s race pace has seemed closer to that of Mercedes than Red Bull. Having started the season in disastrous fashion, Mercedes have managed to claw back their deficit to the Italian team, though still remain some way off from claiming their first win in 2020.
This fact is especially bad news for Lewis Hamilton who is agonizingly close to losing his streak of winning at least one race in each season he has contested.
Having just been appointed an honorary Brazilian citizen, the British driver could have his best shot yet of maintaining his streak in Sau Paulo, especially since the weather forecast predicts rain for this weekend.
That said, the last time Brazil witnessed a wet race in 2016, Verstappen announced himself to the world and marked himself out as a future world champion.
The Dutchman worked his way from 16th to third in just 14 laps after a strategy blunder by Red Bull. The drive ranks as one of the best in recent F1 history and should be a warning for those looking to challenge him this weekend.
Friday, Practice 1 and Qualifying
Since this weekend features a Sprint Race, Friday will witness just the single practice session followed by the weekend’s qualifying session.
With the probability of rain predicted to be as high as 55%, it is fair to say that the drivers and teams are bracing themselves for a wet weekend.
The air temperature on Friday will hover between 26 and 18 degrees Celsius.
Saturday, Practice 2 and Sprint
It is almost certain to rain on Saturday with thunderstorms predicted to hit the circuit at around 13:00.
This means Practice 2 could be a washout with the sprint also likely to be run in damp conditions as the rain petters out.
The air temperature will be marginally cooler with temperatures hovering between 18 and 25 degrees Celsius.
Sunday is also likely to see rain with the weather conditions indicating that a shower will hit the circuit between 11:00 to around 17:00.
This could lead to a thrilling race with the order likely to be affected due in part to the sprint also being contested in the wet.
Sunday is also expected to be the hottest day at the venue with the air temperature oscillating between 19 and 27 degrees Celsius throughout the day.