Ros­berg hopes to win Brazil cham­pi­onship

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport Starts Here -

THE five world cham­pi­ons on the cur­rent grid have all se­cured at least one ti­tle in Brazil and on Sun­day they could be joined by a sixth — if Nico Ros­berg wins the race, team-mate Lewis Hamil­ton’s hopes of an un­likely late-sea­son come­back will be over.

First, though, the Ger­man has to ne­go­ti­ate one of the most in­tense week­ends of the year.

The Brazil­ian Grand Prix throbs with a pas­sion and fer­vour matched by few oth­ers.

In­ter­la­gos and Sao Paulo are in­ex­tri­ca­bly linked with Formula 1 even if the days of a win­ning Brazil­ian driver may be some time in the past.

Brazil’s first leg­endary grand prix driver, Emer­son Fit­ti­paldi, was born there, and his suc­cesses on the world stage laid the path for all oth­ers to fol­low.

Ayr­ton Senna was, like­wise, a Paulista, and is buried in Mo­rumbi ceme­tery a few miles away. He was a hero to Rubens Bar­richello, who grew up me­tres from the race track and forged his pas­sion watch­ing Senna there, be­fore grad­u­at­ing to F1 a cou­ple of years be­fore his death, be­friend­ing him, and then tak­ing up his man­tle. Felipe Massa, an­other lo­cal boy, fol­lowed suit.

The fans know the glory days have long gone, that a Brazil­ian vic­tory is as un­likely as a day with­out a traf­fic jam in one of the world’s most crowded cities.

But still they come, pack­ing the grand­stands and singing and chant­ing from early in the day.

What draws them there? A deep-seated pas­sion for the sport, for one. The al­most-cer­tainty of a great sport­ing spec­ta­cle, for an­other.

In­ter­la­gos has a knack for pro­duc­ing ex­cit­ing races. Drama is syn­ony­mous with the track, not least be­cause of its po­si­tion at the busi­ness end of the sea­son.

It is a claus­tro­pho­bic place. The cir­cuit winds around a nat­u­ral am­phithe­atre, high on a hill, the sprawl of Sao Paulo both a back­drop and crush­ing in from all sides. The heavy hu­mid­ity, and al­most-per­ma­nent threat of rain, add to the at­mos­phere. It feels locked in, and not just be­cause of the cramped old pad­dock, a frac­tion of the size of any­thing Bernie Ec­cle­stone finds ac­cept­able th­ese days.

The track is a splash of vi­brant green in an ocean of con­crete grey and smog brown; the city butting up against the perime­ter fence, end­less tower blocks fill­ing the sky­line.— BBC.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Zimbabwe

© PressReader. All rights reserved.