Posted on March 26, 2013

The Strategy Report

The Malaysian Grand Prix provided some extraordinary talking points with the dispute between Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber the main focus. Although this was primarily a dispute over trust and team orders, some curious race strategy decisions created the circumstances for the Red Bull drama and the Mercedes team orders, as we shall see. Pre-race considerations After the practice sessions the feeling among team strategists was that tyre degradation would be very high, while wear was expected to mean that medium tyres would last 15 laps with the hard lasting 18 laps. But the decisive data would be the degradation More…

Posted on November 20, 2012

The Strategy Report

Pre-Race Expectations Before the race started, teams were certain that this would be a one-stop race. The Pirelli tyre choice of Medium and hard was quite conservative and there were no signs of the extreme degradation that had been such a feature of the first half of the season. Degradation was 0.02 sec per lap for the medium and 0.01 sec per lap for the Hard. Pirelli had been influenced by the high temperatures in the November 18 week last year and for most of this year the temperatures have been 5 degrees warmer than seasonal average. So everyone expected More…

Posted on October 16, 2012

The Strategy Report

After the unpredictability of the first half of the season, the Korean Grand Prix fell into the pattern we have seen recently – and will probably see in the next two races – of most runners doing a two stop strategy with drivers largely choosing to race on the harder prime compound tyre in the second and third stints. But there were a few counter strategies and some other unusual aspects to Sunday’s race, not least the strange late race messages from Red Bull Racing urging the winner Sebastian Vettel to slow down due to concerns over the front tyres. More…

Posted on September 25, 2012

The Strategy Report

The Singapore Grand Prix can definitely be classed as a “what might have been” race, as the intervention of two safety cars meant that we were denied an exciting and unpredictable finish. Also the retirements of Lewis Hamilton and Pastor Maldonado spoiled what would have been intense competition at the front. None of this will have bothered Sebastian Vettel, who took his second win of the season, nor Fernando Alonso, who extended his championship lead over all his rivals bar Vettel. But despite the anti-climactic ending, the strategy decisions and factors that shaped the race are very interesting and worth More…



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