Vitantonio “Tonio” Liuzzi was born in Locorotondo, Italy, on 6 August 1981. He began kart racing at the age of 9. During his time as a kart racing driver he won the Italian Karting Championship (1993) and the Karting World Championship (2001), amongst other successes.
In 2001 Liuzzi debuted in single-seater racing, taking second place in the German Formula Renault championship. The following year he competed in the German Formula Three championship, where he came in ninth overall. During the year he also test drove for F1 team Williams. In 2003 he was signed by Red Bull’s F3000 team. He ended the season in fourth position. Continuing on in F3000, he joined the Arden team for 2004 and took the title that season.
Vitantonio Liuzzi made his Formula One debut in 2005, racing for Red Bull, sharing his position on the team with Christian Klien. He scored his first point during his first race at San Marino that year. In 2006 Liuzzi enjoyed his first full F1 season racing for Toro Rosso. He earned the team’s only point at the United States Grand Prix, though his consistency was praised. The 2007 season with Toro Rosso was challenging and Liuzzi scored once at the Grand Prix in China. He joined Force India as the third driver for the 2008 season. In 2009 he raced the last five rounds for Force India. He became a full-time driver for Force India in 2010.
Heikki Johannes Kovalainen was born in Suomussalmi, Finland, on 19 October 1981. The talented driver began his career in auto racing with kart racing from 1991. In 1999 Kovalainen took the runner-up position in the Finnish Karting Formula A championship. Then in 2000 he was named Finnish Kart Driver of the Year after winning the Nordic championship, the Paris-Bercy Elf Masters and various other achievements.
2001 saw Heikki Kovalainen beginning his single-seater racing career. During the year he took 4th place in the Formula Renault British Championship, 8th in the Macau Formula Three Grand Prix and was named Rookie of the Year by the Finnish Automobile Sports Federation. 2002 was another successful year, with Kovalainen coming in third overall in the British Formula Three Series with Fortec Motorsport. His five wins, three fastest laps and three pole positions meant he was once again Rookie of the Year. He also placed second at the Macau Grand Prix and fourth in the Zandvoort Marlboro Masters.
Kovalainen began competing in the World Series by Nissan in 2003, where he came in second in the standings. That same year he test drove for Renault R23 and Minardi F1 Team. He moved to Pons Racing for the 2004 World Series by Nissan and won the championship with six wins, ten fastest laps and nine poles. Renault F1 also appointed him their second test driver in 2004. Heikki Kovalainen’s success continued into 2005 as he finished the GP2 Series championship in runner-up position, as well as becoming an official Renault F1 test driver.
It was in 2006 that his F1 career really began to take off. That year he was Renault’s 3rd driver, during which he gained extensive experience. Kovalainen made his F1 debut in 2007, gaining his maiden podium with a second place finish in the Japanese Grand Prix. He took seventh place overall that season. For the 2008 F1 season, Kovalainen joined the McLaren team. The season saw him gaining his first fastest lap, first pole position and first win, placing 7th overall with 51 points. 2009 was a more challenging year for this fantastic driver, who managed to finish in 12th position with 22 points.
On 14 December 2009, it was announced that Heikki Kovalainen would join the Lotus Racing team for the 2010 F1 season.
The Sepang International Circuit, or as it is also known the Sepang F1 International Circuit, does not only host the Formula 1 Malaysian Grand Prix, but is home to the A1 Grand Prix and the Moto GP Malaysian Grand Prix. Many other motor sport events are also hosted here during the year.
Compared to other Grand Prix venues, the Sepang International Circuit ranks amongst the best, with the facilities and the technology to back that statement. The media resources that the circuit has available and the fantastic pit area, are facilities that the Sepang F1 International Circuit can be proud of. The grandstands and amenities for spectators are also superb, ensuring comfort and a great view of the action.
The designer of this amazing circuit was Hermann Tilke, from Germany, who has designed similar superb facilities in Bahrain, Turkey and Shanghai. The 5.54 kilometer main circuit, is usually raced clockwise, and is known for its wide straits and somewhat sweeping corners. The track was built in a very unusual manner, as only an extremely tight hairpin corner, separates the pit straight and the long back straight.
Configurations of the Sepang International Circuit can be varied for use. It allows the clockwise directed north circuit to be utilized, which is situated on the first half of the Sepang F1 Circuit. After turn number six, the track turns toward the pit straight, and is a total of 2.71 kilometers in length. The opposite side of the race track, forms the south circuit. On this circuit, the long back straight, that is used on the main circuit, then becomes the pit straight. The pit straight for the south circuit runs into the main circuits’ number eight corner, which then forms a hairpin corner. As with all the circuits at the Sepang F1 Circuit, the south circuit is also raced in a clockwise direction, and is a total length of 2.61 kilometers. Due to the versatility of the Sepang International Circuit, it is also able to host motocross and kart racing at the track.
He may be F1‘s most successfull driver, but that doesn’t mean the 2006 Formula One season is any easier for him. Michael Schumacher has come a long way from his first cart race at age five, to his current number 5 position in the 2006 F1 standings. From the time he became German Junior Champion in 1984, anyone associated with racing knew Schumacher had the gifts to really make an impact on the sport.
A slew of impressive kart performances jumpstarted his career: winning the German Junior Championships again in ’85, Second Place in the Junior World Championships in Le Mans, 3rd place in the 1986 German Senior Kart Championships, and finally capping his learning curve by winning both the German and the European Senior Kart Championships in 1987).
In 1988, Schumacher transitioned into the big leagues: embarking on his first season in a Formula racing car, drawing the attention of Willi Weber, who was looking for up-and-coming talents. During a Formula Ford race on the rain-soaked Salzburgring, Michael stormed from 7th to 1st place during just one lap.
In his first Formula 3 season in 1989, Michael Schumacher won two races and ended the championships just one point behind in third place, after Heinz-Harald Frentzen. The champion was Karl Wendlinger. The rest, as they say, is history. But the truth is, in nearly 20 years of continuous driving, you’re only as good as your last performance on the track.
Michael Schumacher is a five-times World Champion F1 driver and tops the list of most Grand Prix wins in the history of Formula One.
Currently 21 points behind series leader Fernando Alonso, and with 11 races still ahead of him, Michael Schumacher faces his most challenging season yet.