Kevin Magnussen Q&A: Singapore Grand PrixSeptember 12, 2023
K-Mag previews this weekend's Singapore Grand Prix, a race where he twice recorded the fastest race lap time in both 2018 and 2019.
Round 16 of the 2023 FIA Formula 1 World Championship brings MoneyGram Haas F1 Team to Singapore. What is it about this country that makes it a flagship event on the calendar?
“Singapore is the original night race. It’s a great place for fans to come and experience Formula 1. The whole weekend is full of events going on, all around the city, and it’s really an event where the whole of Singapore embraces the event. The track is a street circuit which is always a challenge.”
The Marina Bay Circuit is arguably the most challenging race for drivers physically. The heat and humidity, sudden changes in weather conditions, and general adapting to a night race, how much extra preparation goes in from your side to acclimatize?
“I think the biggest thing about Singapore is that it’s the most physical track of the year with the heat and humidity. That’s an extra strain on the drivers, but also because of the track layout and the low-speed nature of the track, the race continues for a long time, it’s often close to the two-hour limit for a Formula 1 race. You lose a lot of liquid, you sweat a lot and it’s very demanding of the driver. In all the training I do, the main event is the main motivation to train in Singapore, that’s how I feel anyway. It’s the most exhausted I’ve ever been in Singapore. There can be good and bad years with the humidity, but generally, it’s the most demanding race.”
The track has had some revisions made to it – most notably the section between Turns 16 and 19 of the 2022 layout will now become one long 397.9m straight, reducing the total number of corners from 23 to 19. What do you make of the changes and will another long straight help or hinder the set-up of the VF-23?
“I think it’s interesting. It’s probably going to make it slightly less demanding physically, it’s going to be faster, so it’s probably going to last for a shorter time so we’ll lose less liquid and be slightly less demanding. Whether that will change anything for us as a team, time will tell.”