Length: 4.574 km
F3 lap record: 1m32.599s (Felix Rosenqvist, 2011)
Circuit map: click here
Geographic position: click here
After nine rounds and 27 races, staged at some of the continent's finest circuits across five different countries, the FIA Formula 3 European Championship comes to a close this weekend as the 2013 campaign reaches its climax at Hockenheim. With a tally of eight wins and 15 podium finishes, Felix Rosenqvist heads to the season-finale locked in an intense scrap for the title with Raffaele Marciello, with all eyes in the paddock directed at the battle for overall glory.
The FIA Formula 3 European Championship field regroups at Hockenheim just days on from last weekend's penultimate round at Vallelunga, which saw Felix put in a series of emphatic comeback drives from the back of the grid as he fought to overcome the effects of a broken suspension in Saturday qualifying. Going into the finale, Felix sits 45.5 points adrift of Marciello with 75 left up for grabs - as the championship returns to a circuit that's given the Mücke Motorsport Swede no fewer than four international F3 wins (the latest coming during the series' most recent visit to the German Grand Prix venue back in May). Drama, in other words, will be present in every shape and form - and for Rosenqvist, whose 83.5-point gap over Britain's Alex Lynn means he cannot be overhauled for second overall, there is nothing to lose; and everything to win...
Flashback: the previous round
FIA Formula 3 European Championship: Vallelunga
Press Release: Rosenqvist salvages crucial points with Italian fightback
Video: Felix Rosenqvist: a spirited Vallelunga fightback
One of Hockenheim's most exotic features is something as rare as a straight that actually bends. This pedal-to-the-metal left-hand sweep halfway around the lap - named the "Parabolica" - creates a real technical dilemma for engineers, with the rest of the track being made up of a mixture of slow, medium and high speed corners. The fine balance between potentially race-winning top speed at the end of the straight and sufficient grip in the other sections of the circuit forces teams into a car set-up compromise, which often puts the driver in a difficult situation as he either struggles for straight-line speed or performance in the sweeping Motodrom at the end of the lap.
Turn 1 is one of the fastest and most spectacular on the entire calendar, taken at well over 200 km/h. The exit consists of a wide tarmac run-off area that is sometimes used a bit too extensively by drivers, leading to penalties or even to the occasional high-speed crash.
The weather for the final round of the season looks set to offer largely comfortable conditions, with only a small risk of rain on Sunday. With temperatures predicted to reach almost 20 degrees Celsius, the 120 000-plus crowds expected are in for a real treat of a weekend, with a light breeze providing further comfort in the grandstands.
Click here for a detailed weather forecast
"The last couple of weeks have been pretty intense - but I still feel very refreshed and ready for the finale this weekend. Returning to Hockenheim will mark somewhat of a homecoming after the trip to Vallelunga, and it's a circuit I've always enjoyed. I won the final race of the weekend there back in May, and we normally have quite a strong car at Hockenheim. As far as the championship is concerned, we lost a bit of ground last weekend; but, on a positive note, that means I can travel to Germany with literally nothing to lose. I've already secured at least second place in the standings, and I will be giving it my absolute maximum in the fight for the title. I've made up more than 45 points on Raffaele on two separate occasions this year, so it's definitely not an impossible task - even though it obviously won't be easy. My clear target for this weekend is to challenge for further wins, and to bring the season to a really strong conclusion."
All times local (GMT+02:00)
Friday 18 October
Free Practice 1: 12.00 (40 minutes)
Free Practice 2: 12.45 (40 minutes)
Qualifying 1: 16.25 (20 minutes)
Qualifying 2: 17.00 (20 minutes)
Saturday 19 October
Race 1: 11.10 (35 minutes)
Race 2: 17.05 (35 minutes)
Sunday 20 October
Race 3: 11.00 (35 minutes)
How it works
Each round of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship is made up of three races, all of which are of equal length (35 minutes) and importance for the outcome in the title chase. The points structure mirrors that in use in Formula 1, with the winner of each race being awarded 25 points.
The grid for all three races is formed in Friday's two qualifying sessions, which are separated by a short break. The reverse-grid regulations in use during the championship's previous Formula 3 Euro Series incarnation have been dropped for 2013, with qualifying now left as the only tool for shaping up starting positions.
The Race 1 grid is established by the outright results of Qualifying 1, while the subsequent second qualifying session forms the grid for Race 3. For Race 2, the grid will be based on each driver's second-fastest lap in Qualifying 1.
The full 2013 calendar and points system can be viewed here.
Preliminary entry list
FIA Formula 3 European Championship - 2013 entry list
HOW TO FOLLOW FELIX THIS WEEKEND
As always, www.felixracing.se will be fully updated throughout the weekend, with reports from each of the sessions that take place. The website is the central hub of information for everything that goes on both on and off the track, and will also feature other relevant news, pictures and videos.
All three races at the event will be streamed LIVE at www.fiaf3europe.com. A link to the stream will appear at the start page of www.felixracing.se. All-in-all, FIA Formula 3 European Championship action is broadcast in 149 countries throughout the world, out of which more than 80 provide LIVE TV coverage. For further information, please click here.
The interaction with fans and followers will principally involve Felix Racing's official Facebook Fan Page (link below), where supporters can discuss all the goings-on and post potential questions to Felix. Tweets will also be forthcoming through Felix's own Twitter account (@FRosenqvist).