Australian GP 2011 © Clive Mason/Getty Images

Formula One returns to Melbourne and Albert Park this weekend for the first grand prix of 2012. Arm yourself with some valuable numerical trivia ahead of the event…

Formula One is currently holed up in Melbourne's inner-city suburb Victoria for the latest installment of the Australian Grand Prix – and the opening battle of the 2012 Formula One World Championship.

Albert Park is, of course, one of Australia's most famous circuit and so we thought you should prepare for the weekend with some of the track's most important facts and figures…

 

12...

There'll be drivers from 12 countries lining up on the grid, including two Australians racing on homesoil – Mark Webber and Daniel Ricciardo. Conversely, it's the first time since the German Grand Prix in 1973 that a Formula One race has started with no Italian drivers.

 

1953...

The first grand prix to be held at 120,000-capacity Albert Park was a non-world championship Formula Libre race on November 21, 1953. It was the first time the Australian Grand Prix had been hosted on a circuit in a major city and it was won by Doug Whiteford by a massive five laps. Damon Hill took the spoils in the first of Formula One's Australian Grand Prix to be held at Albert Park in 1996.

 

15...

The number of Australian Grand Prix started by Michael Schumacher. Not surprisingly he also holds the record for most Formula One grand prix victories in the country with four podium-topping finishes. Damon Hill, Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Jenson Button, Gerhard Berger and David Coulthard have all won two, while McLaren top the constructor's list with 10 wins since Formula One hit Australia in 1985.  

null© Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

 

1,728...

The whopping number of tyres being shipped to Melbourne for the first race of 2012. If stacked creatively that's one enormous Michelin Man the Formula One entourage could put together. The expected life-span of a medium tyre at Albert Park is 20 laps, with 14 for a soft tyre. With 58 race laps, plus testing and qualifying, that's a lot of tyres.

 

4...

This many litres of sweat is produced by each driver during a race – probably more if you're one of the six world champions (Vettel, Button, Hamilton, Raikkonen, Alonso and Schumacher) starting on the grid this weekend.

 

55,000...

With this many corporate meals being served on race weekend at Albert Park, the 10,000 staff being employed are sure to be pretty busy. Add the 47 mechanics and engineers and 50 marketing, management and catering people each team is bringing and Albert Park is set to be busier than a a termite in a saw mill.  

null© Mark Thompson/Getty Images

 

56...

Among the more mind-boggling race statistics available is the number of gear changes required per lap. It's enough to be make you concerned about serious RSI in the elbow. And with 65 per cent of each lap spent at full throttle – the longest uninterruped stretch being the ten seconds of pit straight – a lot of this gear changing is squished into less than half of the circuit.

 

9...

Much of the Albert Park track can be driven by street-registered vehicles for the nine months of the year that the circuit isn't reserved for racing, qualifying and preparation. The speed limit during this time averages at 31mph, which is slower than pit-lane speed.

 

2014...

The year that Formula E, a series competed by electric cars, could become a full championship. According to a Stuff interview with Garry Connelly, the deputy president of the FIA Institute, Australia and Albert Park is being considered as a host for a single round of the international championship. 

 

null© Clive Mason/Getty Images

 

0...

The number of Australians that have won the Formula One Australian Grand Prix. Can Mark Webber change that this year?

 

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