The grid is all set for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix and drivers are ready to go racing in just a few hours. The last time F1 raced at the Istanbul Park circuit in 2020, rain took over the track and we witnessed a very chaotic race.
Heading into the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix weekend, weather forecasts predicted a mostly wet weekend. However, Friday's free practice sessions saw dry track conditions and it wasn't until Saturday that rain became a factor during the third and final practice session.
It was predicted that the qualifying session would also be washed out, however, it stopped pouring right before the session started and the track dried out in time for Q1.
Weather prediction for the Turkish Grand Prix
The overall paucity of rain over the Turkish Grand Prix weekend looks set to continue into Sunday as we might be in for a dry race throughout. Weather reports suggest close to a 7% chance of precipitation during the course of the race.
That said, those chances could drastically increase at any time as there is an expected cloud cover of 97% over the track. Those on the ground near the Istanbul Park circuit reported light showers this morning.
The considerable cloud cover over the track means there will be some pretty gusty winds blowing across the track. The weather forecast suggests wind speeds of over 25kmph in the north-east direction, thereby resulting in slight tail winds in Turn 1. The air temperature is expected to hover around the 19º C mark.
Effect on the race
As there is close to no chance of rain during the Turkish Grand Prix, the wet tires will be kept under the covers and teams will be brainstorming over strategies on the slicks. But with clouds over their heads, team strategists will constantly keep an eye on the radar and get the wet tires ready if need be.
The strong winds will also play a role during the Turkish Grand Prix as we could probably see different braking points at turns that have strong tail winds, including the first corner. That could make the run down to Turn 1 at the start of the race even more frantic than usual.