Taking one last look at the Sepang International Circuit and its intricacies before we race at the track for the final time.
|Track length||5.543km/3.444 miles (eighth longest track of the year – longest: Spa-Francorchamps, shortest: Monaco)|
|2016 pole position||Lewis Hamilton, 1m32.850s|
|2016 fastest lap||Nico Rosberg, 1m36.424s (lap 44)|
|Lap record||1:34.223s (Juan Pablo Montoya, 2004)|
|Distance to Turn One||660m/0.410 miles (longest of season: Barcelona 730m/0.454 miles)|
|Longest straight||920m/0.572 miles, on the approach to Turn 15 (longest of the season: Baku, 2.1km/1.305 miles)|
|Top speed||330km/h/205mph, on the approach to Turn 15 (fastest of season: Monza, 360km/h/224mph)|
|Full throttle||65 per cent (highest of the season: Monza, 75 per cent). The longest period of full throttle is 12s, on the approach to Turn 15|
|Fuel consumption||1.79kg per lap, which is average|
|ERS demands||Medium. There is a high dependency on ERS at every track, but the eight braking zones around the lap make it possible to recover braking energy|
|Gear changes||57 per lap/3,192 per race|
The high track temperatures present one of the biggest engineering challenges. The asphalt usually peaks at 55 degrees Celsius in the middle of the day, which means excess heat from the rubber can’t be dissipated onto the road, and that makes it hard to keep the rear tyres alive over a long stint. Engine cooling needs consideration as well.
How to tell when a driver's really on it
Their commitment through Sector Two is always revealing. It’s where the fastest corners on the lap are located and Turns Five, Six, Seven and Eight will be particularly quick this year. Listen out for which driver keeps his right foot buried on the accelerator through this section of corners.
Trickiest bits for the driver
Turn 15, the final corner. The camber was altered prior to last year’s race when the track was re-surfaced and it’s now much more demanding for the drivers. The track slopes away from the apex, making it harder to get the car turned in, and it results in power oversteer as well.
Medium downforce and stiff suspension. The new track surface is very smooth, similar to the Red Bull Ring in Austria.
High. The new asphalt offers a high level of grip from the outset, which increases as more rubber gets laid down. The smoothness of the asphalt allows the cars to run very stiff, giving them even greater scope through fast corners.
Red Supersoft, yellow Soft and white Medium compounds – the seventh time this combination has been used in 2017.
Medium. Only 15 per cent of the lap is spent braking.
Tips if you're a gamer
Be smooth through the fast corners in an effort to save your rear tyres and be very aggressive under braking. There are four overtaking points around the lap, into Turns One, Four, Nine and 15, and they all come as a result of the cars decelerating from 200mph (322km/h). Also think about the start, because going around the outside of Turn One will give you the inside line for Turn One – an approach that gained Fernando Alonso 10 places in 2016.