2020 Formula One Hungarian Grand Prix preview

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Round three of the 2020 Formula One World Championship, the Hungarian Grand Prix, takes place this weekend at the Hungaroring, located outside of Budapest.

The circuit has been home to the Hungarian race for more than three decades, but its layout has changed over the years. The current layout stretches 2.7 miles and consists of an uncompromising succession of corners that can wear down drivers.

The layout also makes the circuit one of the slowest (average speeds are about 120 mph) on the calendar. Just 65% of a lap is at full throttle, with only the tight races in Singapore and Monaco having lower percentages.

Hungaroring, home of the Formula One Hungarian Grand Prix

Hungaroring, home of the Formula One Hungarian Grand Prix

Overtaking is also notoriously difficult, putting the emphasis on qualifying well and finding an effective race strategy. Handling and agility is also more important than outright power here, and with all the tight turns, mechanical rather than aerodynamic grip plays a major role. Pirelli has nominated its C2, C3 and C4 compounds, the same combination used for the previous two rounds in Austria.

We’re normally treated with high heat during the Hungarian race but cooler conditions and wet weather is predicted for both Saturday’s qualifying session and Sunday’s race.

With outright power playing less of an important role, there could be a chance for some of the slower teams to upset Mercedes-AMG’s usual dominance. Going into the weekend, Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas leads the Drivers’ Championship with 43 points. His teammate Lewis Hamilton is second with 37 points and McLaren’s Lando Norris is third with 26 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes leads with 80 points versus the 39 of McLaren and 27 of Red Bull Racing. Last year’s winner in Hungary was Hamilton driving for Mercedes.

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