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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix could see first wet race as forecasters say rain on the way

F1 teams have intermediate and wet tyres at hand but the vehicles are set up for dry conditions

The weather has been hazy at the circuit, but forecasters think rain will be on its way Victor Besa / The National
The weather has been hazy at the circuit, but forecasters think rain will be on its way Victor Besa / The National

Rain can be expected on the final race day of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix for the very first time on Sunday.

According to the BBC Weather forecast, the chances of rain will increase as the race progresses.

In the past nine years of the Formula 1 event at the Yas Marina Circuit, there has never been wet weather conditions during the 55 laps of action.

There was a light shower before the first practice in 2010, but it was brief and did not cause any disruption.

Storms are expected to hit the UAE in the evening. There is a 13 per cent chance of rain before the race begins.

The event is expected to run until around 6.50pm.

This forecast chart from the government's NCM weather centre shows a storm off the coast of the emirate. Courtesy: NCM
This forecast chart from the government's NCM weather centre shows a storm off the coast of the emirate. Courtesy: NCM

The chances for a downpour increases to 27 per cent at 6pm, and to 40 per cent by 7pm.

If it does rain then it could make the racing unpredictable. The teams have intermediate and wet tyres available, but they haven't done any wet weather practice and the cars are set up for dry conditions.

The website of the National Centre of Meteorology stated: “Convective clouds will form eastward by the afternoon, and clouds will increase gradually toward the west especially over the sea and islands during the night with a probability of rainfall."

The website also said that rain clouds with different intensities will be accompanied by lightning and thunder.

The NCM urged all motorists to take precautions while driving in rain and poor visibility.

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