As one of only a handful of Asian events in the Formula One Championships round the Chinese Grand Prix brings the thrills and spills of motor car racing to Asian audiences like never before. Held at the Shanghai International Circuit this yearly event has garnered worldwide attention since its inception in 2004. The story behind China’s quest to host a F1 event harks back to 2002 when the Zhuhai International Circuit in Guangdong was tipped to be the venue of the mega sporting event but due to various inadequacies the exquisitely designed Shanghai International Circuit secured a contract with the Formula One Management to host the Official Chinese Grand Prix. After signing an impressive 7 year contract the Shanghai International Circuit opened its tracks to the racing world on September 26th of 2004 with its debut race. The championship was won by team Ferrari’s Rubens Barrichello while 2005 saw the venue host the final stage of the Formula One championship. Top Racer Fernando Alonso won top honors and also secured the coveted constructor’s award on behalf of Renault F1. Racing great Michael Schumacher also recorded a triumphant win at the 2006 Chinese Grand Prix also known as the Shanghai Grand Prix which was incidentally the last F1 victory for the racing star before announcing his first retirement at the end of the season. Schumacher also clocked in the best lap record of 1:32.238 in 2004 and is intrinsically linked with the history of the tournament as are fellow winners Kimi Räikkönen who won the championship in 2007, Sebastian Vettel (2009) and Lewis Hamilton who secured the Chinese Grand Prix title the most number of times. As the most successful race car driver in China’s F1 history Hamilton recorded wins in 2008, 2009 and 2011.
Built at a cost of $ 240 million the Hermann Tilke designed Shanghai International Circuit boasts a track that is 5.451 km in length with 56 laps. Containing an immensely challenging corner combination the 270 degree turns designed by Tilke himself make the circuit one of the most difficult courses to navigate in the F1 calendar.
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Resources – hotels in Shanghai, Shanghai hotel
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