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Race information - Korea 2013 // Everything you need to know about the South Korean Grand Prix

Published by Christine

It's hard to drum up an awful lot of excitement for the Korean Grand Prix, as the event hasn't lived up to the owner's expectations, the media don't particularly enjoy visiting the local area, and the track doesn't necessarily deliver for fans either. The end of this season also has the difficult task of trying to remain exciting whilst the championships are all but over. Negatives out the way, then, what else is in store for this weekend?

Event schedule

Mark Webber might be the driver to watch going into the Korean race, as the Australian has a ten place grid penalty, and quite a lot to prove. He's also admitted that as it gets nearer and nearer to his departure date, its hard to stay motivated. He could get up to all sorts on track this weekend! Meanwhile, we've got the Ferrari and Mercedes battle to keep us occupied as Red Bull continue to run away with the titles at the top.

There's also a bit of interest coming from the midfield, as Sauber managed to haul a good result in Singapore, with both their drivers making jumps up the standings - although not all with points on the board. Williams are trying their best to get a decent result, whilst Toro Rosso have the eager-to-impress Daniel Ricciardo who must be getting a bit nervous about his new gig by now.

Session timetable
DateDaySessionTimeLocal time
04 OctFridayFree Practice 102:00
GMT +01:00
10:00
GMT +09:00
Free Practice 206:00
GMT +01:00
14:00
GMT +09:00
05 OctSaturdayFree Practice 303:00
GMT +01:00
11:00
GMT +09:00
Qualifying06:00
GMT +01:00
14:00
GMT +09:00
06 OctSundayGrand Prix07:00
GMT +01:00
15:00
GMT +09:00

Support racing for this event includes Jeonnam Motor Racing Championship.

The weather

From a long distance perspective, the weather was set to be sunny and bright all weekend long. As the event draws closer, things seem to be getting a bit more changeable, with sun due on Friday, turning to clouds on Saturday and then the rain moving in on Sunday. It's not just rain, in fact, but the prospect of a typhoon moving in has the organisers a little worried. They are on high alert for the hurricane and making plans for if it hits at any point on Saturday or Sunday.

clear

Yeongam, Friday

23℃

  • Low 17℃
  • Humidity 51%

Clear

moderate

Yeongam, Saturday

26℃

  • Low 21℃
  • Humidity 65%

Partly cloudy

showers

Yeongam, Sunday

25℃

  • Low 21℃
  • Humidity 85%

Chance of rain

Circuit map

Sidepodcast image
DRS Zones
DRS detection 170m after Turn 2
DRS activation 1360m after Turn 2
DRS detection 260m before Turn 16
DRS activation 295m after Turn 18

DRS in Korea hasn't made much of an impact on the racing so far, but the FIA have been tweaking things each and every year to try and improve the situation. Last year they made the one existing zone longer, and this season they have doubled up to feature two distinct zones.

The first comes right after the first two corners, as the drivers take to the massively long 1.2 kilometre straight. The second is detected just before turn 16, and then activated down the start/finish straight, before the drivers head to turn one and speed towards the first zone again. They're quite close together which can be difficult, but we'll just have to see how it goes.

The circuit

Circuit information
CircuitKorean International Circuit
LocationYeongam
CountrySouth Korea
TimezoneGMT +09:00
Race debut2010
Laps55
Length5.615 km
Distance308.630 km
Line offset0.195 km

Development of the South Korea circuit was hampered, mostly by the weather, but also by some internal wrangling. It was still in progress as the paddock began to fill up for the first race in 2010. White lines were painted just days before cars took to the track, and there were piles of bricks and rubble hastily pushed into corners to allow the action to take place unhindered. The track surface was slippery as the tarmac had only been laid ten days beforehand, but gradually the weekend unfolded without major incident.

Enthusiasm for the sport is hard to establish, with circuit organisers unsure of exactly where they stand. In 2011, the grandstands on Friday and Saturday were left mostly empty, despite some fans waiting outside wanting to be allowed in to see the action. Sunday saw a healthier crowd, and thankfully the action unfolding before them was worth watching.

There have been a few tweaks to the track since last year, including a look at the dangerous pit exit, and some additional kerbing to try and keep drivers on the track itself. There have also been some extra run off areas added, or sections where the run-off has had asphalt laid down.

2012 Results
SessionDriverTeamTimeLinks
Free Practice 1Lewis HamiltonMcLaren1:39.148Full results
Free Practice 2Sebastian VettelRed Bull1:38.832Full results
Free Practice 3Sebastian VettelRed Bull1:37.642Full results
QualifyingMark WebberRed Bull1:37.242Full results
Grand PrixSebastian VettelRed Bull1:36:28.651Full results
Fastest LapMark WebberRed Bull1:42.037

Tyre compounds

South Korean Grand Prix tyre selection
Medium and supersoft compounds

It's the same medium and supersoft compound in action this weekend as we saw in Singapore, with the white sidewalls hopefully capable of dealing with the fast and slow compromises at the Korean International Circuit. The red sidewalls of the supersoft may struggle in the race, but they should allow for some fast laps during qualifying when the grid and pole position will be decided.

Korea is an interesting mix: you get some fast corners as well as some slower ones but actually it has the highest lateral energy demand of all the circuits where the supersoft is used, so tyre management is going to be important once more. In particular, the work done in free practice when it comes to assessing the wear and degradation levels on each compound with different fuel loads is going to be especially important.

- Paul Hembery

Press conference schedule

Official press conferences are organised by the FIA and happen four times during the weekend. The qualifying and post race press conferences will take place after the television unilateral interviews.

Press Conference Schedule
DayLocalAttendeeRepresenting
Thursday15:00Jules BianchiMarussia
Paul di RestaForce India
Romain GrosjeanLotus
Esteban GutiérrezSauber
Lewis HamiltonMercedes
Felipe MassaFerrari
Friday16:00Ron MeadowsMercedes
Dickie StanfordWilliams
Andy StevensonForce India
Massimo RivolaFerrari
Graham WatsonCaterham
Beat ZehnderSauber
SaturdayPost qualifyingThree fastest drivers
SundayPost raceFirst three finishing drivers

Race stewards

The FIA stewarding process was changed recently to include a former F1 driver to offer added insight. These are the stewards overseeing this weekend's action.

FIA stewards
NamePosition
Silvia BellotMember of the Royal Spanish Automobile Federation Board of Directors, FIA Women in Motorsport Commission Member, and FIA steward.
Garry ConnellyDeputy President of the FIA Institute, Director of the Australian Institute of Motor Sport Safety, F1 and WTCC Steward, and FIA World Motorsport Council Member.
Emanuele PirroF1 driver 1989-1991 for Benetton and Scuderia Italia, McLaren test driver and five-time Le Mans winner with Audi.

All content in the series South Korea 2013