Formula One racing will venture into North America for the first of two times this season as the Canadian Grand Prix will be staged in Montreal on Sunday. The race has been held since 1961, so it has become an institution of sorts on the F1 circuit.
It is also an important race as far as the point standings are concerned. Everyone is currently chasing Sebastian Vettel, so a win or a strong finish could go a long way toward tightening things up. It won't be easy, though, as Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve has proven to be a big-time challenge to the world's elite drivers over the years.
Things could be particularly tricky as there is a 30 percent chance of rain on Sunday, according to Weather.com. Qualifying took place in tough conditions on Saturday and it resulted in Felipe Massa crashing, so the drivers will have to be very careful if the track is even the slightest bit slick.
Here is all the information you need to know about the Canadian Grand Prix, including when and where to watch it as well as which drivers figure to be in contention.
Where: Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve in Montreal, Quebec, Canada
When: Sunday, June 9 at 2 p.m. ET
|2||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing-Renault|
|15||Adrian Sutil||Force India-Mercedes|
|14||Paul di Resta|
|21||Giedo van der Garde||Caterham-Renault|
Drivers to Watch
As arguably the most recognizable F1 driver in the world, Hamilton always has a target on his back heading into every race. The Canadian Grand Prix is no different, especially since Hamilton has won the event more than any other active driver with three victories. Hamilton is lurking in fourth place in the points standings, but a win could truly catapult him.
Hamilton has looked fantastic during practice thus far and that has to be disconcerting for his counterparts. He seems to have figured out the track over the years and his confidence appears to be at an all-time high as his comments to Sky Sports F1 suggest that he is locked in and focused on winning the race for a fourth time.
Hamilton is also the defending champion in this race, so there is no doubt that every other driver in the field will be gunning for him in hopes of spoiling his trip to Canada.
While Hamilton won the Canadian Grand Prix last year and in 2010, fellow Brit Jenson Button managed to take the checkered flag in 2011. Button hasn't had the greatest season thus far as he sits just 10th in points, but he has winning experience on this track and that is something that shouldn't be overlooked.
Unfortunately for Button, things haven't gone well for him in Montreal thus far this year. According to Sky Sports F1, Button's car suffered a gearbox sensor issue during practice.
That won't be a big issue if his team is able to repair it, but replacing it would result in Button moving to the rear of the field. His car is probably good enough to come back from something like that, but he would obviously have to work for it. Button is a threat regardless of where he starts, but that is definitely a storyline worth following on Sunday.
Every driver is chasing one man in the points standings this year, and that man is Fernando Alonso of Spain. He has already one twice this season and he stands a solid chance to adding a third win as he has won the Canadian Grand Prix in the past. Alonso hasn't won the race since 2006, but he is racing better than ever and will be incredibly tough to beat.
If practice is any indication, Alonso could potentially run away from the field on Sunday. According to SuperSport Blitz, Alonso had the fastest time in the second practice session, so he should have plenty of momentum heading into the race itself.
Alonso is on fire and there is nothing to suggest that he will be extinguished in the Canadian Grand Prix. It will be tough for him to continue this roll that he is currently on, but he clearly has a lot of belief and it is showing in his driving.
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