When Formula One came to Australia in 1985 it set up home in Adelaide. However, ex-racer-turned-entrepreneur Bob Jane wanted a race in Melbourne. He created a huge "thunderdome" and invented the AUSCAR series, bringing NASCAR action to Australia.
The desire to have a race in Melbourne did not wane. Despite the popular end of season slot for the Adelaide race, pressure was growing from the Melbourne motor sport community, and in 1992 Jeff Kennett was elected the new premier of the State of Victoria. He immediately set about improving Melbourne's profile. First on his list was the Australian Grand Prix.
An agreement was reached with Formula One in 1993, but the contract with Adelaide did not expire until 1995, so Kennett had plenty of time to prepare. A track was developed in Melbourne's beautiful Albert Park, part of it using closed-off public roads, and in 1996 the city held the first round of the World Championship. Since then, the venue has become the home of Formula One's season opener. The race is very popular with drivers and fans alike, and the party atmosphere of Melbourne keeps them coming back year after year.
2008 ResultsRace Date: 29 Mar 2009
Number of Laps: 58
Circuit Length: 5.303 km
Race Distance: 307.574 km
Lap Record: 1:24.125 - M Schumacher (2004)
Past Winners1 Lewis Hamilton
2 Nick Heidfeld
3 Nico Rosberg
4 Fernando Alonso
5 Heikki Kovalainen
6 Kazuki Nakajima
7 Sebastien Bourdais
8 Kimi Räikkönen
Timetable (GMT)2008 - Lewis Hamilton
2007 - Kimi Raikkonen
2006 - Fernando Alonso
2005 - Giancarlo Fisichella
Fri 27 March 2009
Friday Practice 1 01:30 - 03:00
Friday Practice 2 05:30 - 07:00
Sat 28 March 2009
Saturday Practice 03:00 - 04:00
Sun 29 March 2009
2009 F1 season: frequently asked questions
Who will broadcast the 2009 F1 season in Britain?
How will the 2009 F1 rules change car design?The BBC will take over F1 broadcasts from ITV in 2009.
2009 Technical Regulations - published on: 12.01.2009Grooved tyres, which have been used since 1998, will be replaced with ordinary racing slick tyres.
F1 car aerodynamics will be subject to new restrictions. Many of the small aerodynamics details seen on cars in 2008 will be banned. Rear wings are being made narrower. Front wings will be wider and lower. Drivers will also be able to adjust the position of their wings for a limited number of times per lap.
The purpose of the tyre and aerodynamic changes is to allow the cars to follow each other more closely and increase opportunities for overtaking.
Teams will be allowed to use Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems (KERS) from 2009, similar to the systems used in some hybrid road cars such as the Toyota Prius.
Engines will have to last for three consecutive race weekends. In 2008 they had to last for two.
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F1 Prediction League 2009 Links:
F1 Prediction System
Video Thread:: Coming soon.
5 Day Forecast
Ok, thought I might as well post this as the season is only a few weeks away now.
To start this off, whos getting up at 1:30am for Friday Practice 1? Who do you think will be the surprise for Melbourne?
06/03/2009 [Iceman1]- updated
06/03/2009 [Fergie1] Formula 2 in title changed to caps because I like it that way.