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Spa, Preview: Ross: “We will be working hard to make the most of the weekend.”

Spa, Preview: Ross: “We will be working hard to make the most of the weekend.”

The first race after the summer break takes place this weekend with the Belgian Grand Prix, Round 12 of the 2011 Formula One World Championship, hosted at the historic Spa-Francorchamps circuit. The race will mark Michael’s 20th anniversary in Formula One, having made his debut at the 1991 Belgian Grand Prix.

During qualifying, DRS can be used on 63% (4.4 km) of the circuit, only Monza has a higher percentage of DRS usage.

A total of 80% of the lap distance is spent at full throttle, including for 23.5 seconds from La Source to Les Combes.

The Belgian Grand Prix has been won from pole position just twice in the last ten years, in 2002 and 2007.

Ross knows that after the summer break, everyone is looking forward to the second half of the season getting underway in Belgium this weekend: “Spa is one of those tracks which are universally loved by drivers and fans, and the racing is always thrilling, usually helped by a large dose of inclement weather. It’s a truly classic circuit, and the fast, sweeping corners make it a great venue to watch the cars in action. With the two-week shutdown, there has been limited opportunity to develop the car since the last two races in Germany and Hungary, a situation which of course applies to everyone. However, we will be working hard to make the most of the weekend, and look forward to an exciting countdown to the end of the season. Congratulations to Michael who marks his 20th anniversary in Formula One this weekend. It has been an honour and a privilege to work so closely with him for 17 of those 20 years, and I look forward to more good times ahead together.”

For Norbert, coming back to Spa is always a pleasure: “This is one of the classic circuits and a true link back to the road racing history of Formula One. There is little left to say about the track itself - it offers a complete challenge to the car and engine, with some of the slowest and fastest corners of the season, plus the longest full-throttle period of the year at over 23 seconds, which is the reason why we dyno-test our engines using Spa simulation runs. Our team members have been able to recharge their batteries during the mandatory shutdown period, and we will head to Spa fully motivated for the final part of the season. It will be a special weekend for Michael, who will mark the twentieth anniversary of his Formula One debut this weekend, which is an outstanding and remarkable achievement. The races at Spa have historically been full of surprises and the weather has mostly played a major role. The layout of the circuit should suit our current technical package a little bit better than was the case at the previous two races.”

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