The Spanish Grand Prix is held at the Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona, and is a circuit that all the teams are intimately familiar from considerable testing. During the three weeks since the last event, most of the outfits have rolled out significant upgrades to their cars in the quest for performance, which should make the prospects for the weekend all the more interesting.
The Circuit de Catalunya is known as a strong test of the whole package. The long straight stresses engines, aero efficiency and braking; the high speed corners work the aerodynamic grip; the slow corners the mechanical grip and traction; and with so much time invested in testing time there, the drivers all have a very good idea of how to get the best out of their cars, so, even without traction control, they are a less significant part of the equation than at some other tracks. Tyres are usually given a proper pounding at this circuit, so there is some reward for teams that are able to look after their rubber - they will be able to run long stints on the option compound, if their strategy requires it.
Temperatures should be significantly down on the three hot flyaway races that started the season, so expect to see the cars more enclosed and attacking aerodynamic efficiency in the search for the tiny advantages over rivals: the midfield is particularly tightly packed, so, even a few thousandths could prove significant.