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Felipe Massa Gives First Glimpse Of New Circuit Of The Americas

Scuderia Ferrari driver Felipe Massa helped kick off this weekend's Formula 1 United States Grand Prix by treating a group of guests to virtual laps of the Circuit Of The Americas (COTA) in Shell's state-of-the-art simulator.

AUSTIN, Tex., Nov. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The 2012 season sees Formula 1 racing return to the United States for the first time since 2007 with an all-new venue in Austin, Texas. To help launch this very special weekend, Massa joined invited media guests from around the world to give them a first glimpse of the 5.5-kilometre (3.4-mile) Grand Prix circuit.


Visiting a new track is nothing Scuderia Ferrari and its Technical Partner Shell are not used to. The secret of success is being able to anticipate the challenge before you arrive – thus making work done in the simulators and engine test bays critical. Having worked together since the birth of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship, the pair have encountered many races at unfamiliar tracks and Shell scientists have worked closely with Ferrari engineers to develop innovative products and deliver a premium fuel, which meets one of the most tightly controlled and specific fuel requirements in the racing world. With the knowledge gained from testing on the track with Ferrari, Shell scientists developed Shell V-Power Premium Gasoline® for cars on the road to deliver maximum protection for optimum performance.

"We already have a good understanding of the challenge the COTA will give us and have undertaken several virtual long runs in Italy. We actually run programs to replicate the entire race weekend so, although there is no real substitute for being here, we already know which products are going to give Scuderia Ferrari the best advantage in Texas."
Cara Tredget, Shell Ferrari Technology Manager

Driving virtual laps of Austin's COTA in Shell's Professional Simulator Experience, Massa brought to life the extreme challenges he, Scuderia Ferrari and Shell will face this weekend around the 20-turn counter-clockwise track. The new track will join the ranks of some of the most technical on the Formula 1 calendar and his laps proved that the drivers and fans have much to look forward to this weekend.

"The Shell Professional Simulator Experience is one of the most realistic simulators available in the world, so it is fantastic to be able to give people a sneak preview of the new Circuit Of The Americas. The track is extremely technical with lots of passing opportunities when it widens out, and I think all of the drivers will find this weekend particularly challenging. We have already driven hundreds of simulated laps of the track in Maranello and the engineers have been working hard to optimize the F2012 for the track.

Understanding the nature of a new track is always complicated, especially as we have no previous data to study, so we won't know until Sunday exactly what the race has in store. That is why working with long-standing partners like Shell is so important for our team to try and gain that all important competitive edge."
Felipe Massa, Scuderia Ferrari driver

  • Images and a rights-free film of today's activity are available here:
    • Username:  ShellMediaDay
    • Password:  MassaSPSE
    • Instructions: When you log on and enable Java, the directory for your computer will come up on the left side of the screen, with the Desktop destination highlighted. The ShellProfessionalSimulator Experience file will be highlighted on the right. If you want to save the file to your desktop, click the left arrow. If you want to save the file elsewhere, highlight that destination, then click on the left arrow.

Notes to Editors

The Shell Professional Simulator Experience is one of the most technologically advanced simulators in the world. It is used by professional racing drivers to become accustomed to each car's controls and learn track layouts. For more causal users and fans, it allows the driver to experience the innovation and development that drives the technical partnership between Shell and Ferrari in a way that has never been possible until now as well as giving them a taster as to the power and performance of a Formula 1 car.

With this unique asset, Shell has created a tool that gives them a unique insight into one of the most long-standing and successful technical partnerships in motorsport.

About Shell's Technical Partnership with Ferrari

Shell and Ferrari share one of the most successful partnerships in Formula 1 history.

Having contested, in partnership, more than half of all the Formula 1 races ever run, they have together amassed 12 Drivers' Championships and 10 Constructors' Championships.

This strong historical footing provides the basis for what is also one of the most forward-looking partnerships in contemporary motorsport.

SOURCE Shell Oil Company

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