Analysis: How Ferrari missed the chance to inflict more F1 misery on Lewis Hamilton
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Posted By: James Allen  |  12 Jun 2018   |  5:58 pm GMT  |  144 comments

The Canadian Grand Prix has always been a track where the unexpected can happen, where there are options for race strategy and the DRS wing is very effective for overtaking.

However, this year that was not in evidence as drivers struggled to get close to each other to pass – with aerodynamics and overheating tyres the cause – and once again did the race almost uniformly with a one stop strategy.

But it is an open championship; interestingly, the last three Grands Prix have all been dominated by the winner, but in each case, it has been a different driver and team combination; Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in Spain, Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull in Monaco and now Sebastian Vettel in Canada for Ferrari.

Here is our customary in-depth analysis of how – and why – the big decisions got taken, with input and data from some of the decision makers.


Background

Montreal has traditionally been a track where the decision between one stop and two is finely balanced. The danger with doing one stop in Montreal was always that, although you are in front of a two stopper when he comes out from his second stop, he’s on fresh tyres and with the DRS wing he will find it easy to pass you down the long straights.

However, with a 71% chance of a safety car, which would swing the race to the one stoppers, it can be worth a gamble for midfield runners looking to make up places.

With this generation of cars, the FIA recognised the problem of getting close to pass and added a third DRS zone for this race, going into the hairpin. But that did not make any difference and overtaking was scarce in the race. This dictated race strategy.

If Canada can be affected this way then it is surely time to make changes, as has now been done for 2019.

It was interesting to reflect on Friday night about the direction teams appeared to be going. Mercedes continue to dislike the new hypersoft tyre and didn’t use it during Friday’s Free practice 2 session, preferring to concentrate on the ultrasoft and supersoft tyres.

This was a mistake as the drivers didn’t have a chance to get the feel for the tyres ahead of qualifying, just a short run in FP3. And as the race turned out to be all about track position, it was costly.

Ferrari tried it but clearly felt that the ultrasoft was a better race tyre, offering more strategic freedom with a longer first stint in the race.

In contrast Force India showed their intent by working primarily on the hypersoft and supersoft tyres.

In the end Red Bull were the outliers among the top three teams, the only ones to use the hypersoft tyre for qualifying two and the race start. The thinking was that they were gentler on the tyres than the Ferrari or Mercedes car and also that the extra grip off the line would be advantageous in picking up places.

With overtaking so difficult and track position therefore at a premium, a place gained at the start could be very precious.

Vertstappen made a vigorous attack on Bottas for second into Turn 1, but the Finn resisted, and it set him up to finish there. Meanwhile Ricciardo in the sister car did manage to pass Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen and gain a crucial place to fifth.

He would later get into fourth ahead of Hamilton, when the Briton was obliged to make an early pit stop due to overheating.


Changes in order: the overcut works again

Having resisted Verstappen at the start, Bottas was able to stay ahead as the hypersofts inevitably faded after ten laps or so. But he couldn’t do anything about Vettel, who pulled away steadily, despite losing the margin gained at the start when the race was neutralised with a Safety Car for a spectacular accident involving Stroll and Hartley.

Hamilton pitted on Lap 16 to move onto supersofts. Ricciardo had been in undercut range of him and the gap was being monitored back to Leclerc in the Sauber. Hamilton was battling with an overheating engine due to a body part acting wrongly, so his race was compromised first by having to run a different mode, by having to pit earlier than ideal to make adjustments at his stop. He just cleared Leclerc.

Red Bull reacted and brought Ricciardo in a lap later and with a faster stop he was able to overcut the Mercedes and gain another position to fourth. Red Bull had also covered off any threat from Hamilton to Verstappen by anticipating his stop, seeing the Mercedes mechanics running out into pit lane and came in on the same lap. This was a reasonable stint length for the tyres they were on, but only half the stint length Hamilton would have been expecting.

The only ray of sunshine for Hamilton was that Ferrari didn’t capitalise on the chance to beat him with Raikkonen. Hamilton was already set to lose his championship lead to Vettel with the order as it was. Moving him another place behind Vettel would have been valuable to Ferrari.

Although the Mercedes was relatively faster on the supersoft tyres, Hamilton wasn’t able to get the gap down to a safe level to be ahead when the Finn pitted. He was behind Ricciardo and not able to run at his own pace.

Ferrari kept Raikkonen out, attempting to do an overcut of both Red Bulls and Hamilton to get the podium, taking advantage of the clear air ahead. They were greedy but didn’t have the pace to manage it. But by trying and running longer, he didn’t close out the earlier chance to pit and gain track position on Hamilton and add an extra two points to Vettel’s championship lead. The peak of his lead was on Lap 30, there were only a few tenths in it, but the gap was there and as Raikkonen didn’t appear to be making enough ground to jump three cars, it might have made sense.


Midfield battle – advantage Renault

This was a good race for the Renault team that showed itself to be clearly the best of the rest behind the top three teams, albeit at some margin. In the race the cars of Hulkenberg and Sainz comfortably overcame the Force Indias but they were still lapped, despite using the same upgraded engine as the Red Bull team.

Hulkenberg lost a place to Ocon at the start but gained it back in the pits with an overcut, which owed a lot to a problem with the Force India rear jack. Sainz also go ahead.

Perez was forced to try a two-stop strategy, pitting on Lap 9 but he wasn’t able to make use of it in the second stint as he was held up by Gasly with Leclerc just ahead. In previous years that wouldn’t have been an issue at Montreal but it was a clear illustration of just how tough overtaking was this year, despite three DRS zones.

Meanwhile Leclerc and Alonso had a great battle early on which the younger man initially won, but Alonso managed to pass him with an undercut in the pit stops only to retire the car.

The UBS Race Strategy Report is written by James Allen with input and data from several F1 team strategists and from Pirelli

RACE HISTORY AND TYRE USAGE CHARTS – Kindly provided by Williams Martini Racing

The number of laps is on the horizontal axis; the gap behind the leader is on the vertical axis.

A positive sign is an upward curve as the fuel load burns off. A negative sign is the slope declining as the tyre degradation kicks in.

Note the period around Lap 24-27 when Raikkonen is trying to build a gap to the Red Bulls and Hamilton to overcut them. In clear air he doesn’t have Vettel’s pace and also fails to take advantage of the opportunity to take an extra two points off Vettel’s title rival Hamilton by stopping when he still had a safe margin to him.

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1

Ferrari weren’t greedy, Raikkonen failed to take advantage and step up.

What a waste of a Ferrari seat. And it’s been like this for the last 4 and a bit years!!!!

Get leclerc in there now!

2

Hi James, this reads like an informed and reasoned analysis.

However, you clearly didn’t check your facts with Sebee. Because if you had, you’d have understood that the entire race was actually orchestrated and agreed some time in advance.

3

Even if somebody else wins the championship, Sebee will say Mercedes decided to give one championship up. He’s always right…

4

Just MGU-K RIC “drama” and HAM PU decision is an orchestration in itself.

One which should not be possible, as the “penalties” are actually against F1 fans.

5

l am getting so tired of all the negative comments about F1. l know it is not perfect by far but was it ever? Would you rather have the noise back and see the winner 45 seconds ahead of everybody else? Sure the past 3 races were nothing to write home about but at least they gave us 3 different winners from 3 different teams. how often do we see that in the sport some of us still love and enjoy? lt is not like you are obliged to watch each and every race if you think the show is so bad. Dwelling in negatives does not help either regardless. Yes each of us are untitled to voice their opinions, but when some here seem to comment only to bitch about the sport with never a possitive thing to say, l would rather they would go somewhere else to spoil everybody’s fun.

Maybe there is an idea here James for a second site. Thejamesallenonidontlikef1. com. Marc

6

@ Cometef1….Like i have said so many times to other like posters with the same complaint…you know who those posters are, the ones that voice dissent and, IYO, discredit the ‘racing’. My suggestion to you is simple, do what i do. Don’t read, just bypass those comments. To suggest that they cease and desist is both presumptious and unecessary. However as an opinion it’s fair enough.

7

Completely agree with this. The racing has not been that bad. Sure, we’ve had some races that haven’t been entertaining, but in championship terms, the unpredictability we’re seeing makes it the most exciting in recent history.

I’ve said it before, if you want to see cut and thrust racing, tune in to MotoGP or head down to your local kart track. F1 never was that way, and its doubtful it ever will be.

8

Is that you TimW?

Fortunately for you, your “pro F1 rally cry” has not been drowned out by real F1 engines.

Save your tires and fuel. This is a battle you shouldn’t fight.

At least MGU-K or PU use allocations can’t stop fans from calling it how it is.

Oh shucks, your comment has just been passed…with DRS.

9

Sebee, surely you don’t think that I’m the only one who enjoys F1?

10
Sotos Mandalos

What I am surprised about with Ferrari/Raikkonen is that his lead over Hukelberg was around 54secs. Was it just possible to pit him with 10-15 laps to go, and although the gap to Hamilton would have increased, with hypersofts could have he possibly attacked him?

11

The official line was that it wasn’t worth risking a pitstop error. In other words they didn’t think Kimi could catch up and pass Hamilton. I agree it was probably worth a try but I can see their reasoning.

12

If I wanted to see cars being driven slower than they can be while saving fuel and looking after tyres I’d go and stand by a motorway .

13

So i guess you’ll never be watching any form of motorsport ever again?

There is always a limiting factor.

Even if you banned engine modes and had magic, super fast, vibranium tires that never degraded it still doesn’t change the basic physics problem that it is faster to under fuel and then conserve for a few laps than it is to have a full tank and use full power the entire time.

14

At least there’s overtaking on a motorway!

15

Was there any verdict on whether or not the Honda upgrade was positive or not ?

16

@ Garrett Bruce…Marko is being quoted as saying that there were 3/10ths in the Honda upgrade! But where is that increase and against what benchmark?. Honda’s chief man says that equates to 30/40HP ! Without any further elaboration it is quite difficult to translate the ultimate effect. I do still think that despite this increase that Red Bull would be stepping into the unknown if they make a switch. It’s 5 years without a WDC/WCC and that could stretch to seven. That would be nothing short of a disaster for them. Remember that the it’s all change in ’21. What a dilemma. Of course whatever decision they make will also have an effect on their drivers as well.Verstappen is locked in but Ricciardo is not and depending on what engine they choose that will also effect his decisions as well. There doesn’t appear to be any clear path ATM. I guess that we’ll see it all, over the next four weeks or so.

17

Dan’s decision to me looks like it has to be stay at Red Bull. I would love to see him at Ferrari but I don’t see it with Vettel challenging for the title. Red Bull surely have to take a risk and go with Honda. Staying with Renault looks to be unlikely to give them that extra little bit they need on the engine front. They are clearly ahead of everyone on everything except the engine. Honda in both Red Bull teams looks like a solid move for Honda development wise. Lastly I think Max and Dan really push each other to higher levels of performance and are such a good pairing, as each others strengths are their team mates weaknesses. Red Bull choosing Honda would surely give Honda that real incentive to improve.

18

I was hoping Kimi would shake the order via the undercut. There was certainly no strategy blunder on Ferrari’s part imo. It was just Kimi’s execution. He may have been eeking out a gap but it just wasn’t enough. Should it have been the same or near Sebastian’s lap times then jumping Lewis, Daniel and Max was possible.

After a frustrating end to his qualifying, his race was a another disappointment. Notably, he was also cautious at the start. He got a decent getaway and maybe had a crack at Lewis at Turn 1 but instead he braked early which allowed Daniel to swoop past around the outside. He just seemed kinda pedestrian.

Admittedly, I’m a Kimi Raikkonen fan. I really thought at the start of the season that this could be his year for a 2nd WDC. He may have 2 DNF’s through no fault of his own but those crucial mistakes in qualifying like in Baku and Canada. Also, on race day, unlike Bottas in Canada, he doesn’t seem to put his elbows out on race starts anymore. Either he maintains position or loses a place or two at the opening lap.

I may have been hoping that he could win race/s since his return to Ferrari but getting overshadowed by teammates year in year out, occasionally showing stellar pace, and seemingly non-existent in the race at times. This GP is where I could say the remaining belief I have for Kimi Raikkonen has diminished. If he does win a race before retiring, surely I’d be happy but the degree of delight I would have may not be as much because I don’t think he could either through performance or misfortune (I may be wrong though).

19

“All I hope is that the people who saw him go around the track had the same emotions I lived again,” said Joann Villeneuve, Gilles’ widow. “You hear that sound and you say ‘this is what a Formula One engine sounds like.’ ”

20

As a fan of Villeneuve Senior (and to a certain extent Junior), it was the highlight of the weekend.

21

Were you there to witness?

22

Gilles or Jacques this weekend?

Sadly neither. Gilles was before my time, although I had a model of his Ferrari T3 when I was a boy. I would have loved to be at Montreal, but I am this side of the pond. There are a few video’s online though, but Jacques was being a bit careful with the T3, so it all looks quite pedestrian.

Will be at Monza this year, although after the thrashing Ferrari had last year at their home race, I’m not sure its a good idea,

23

Well they certainly managed to inflict misery on the majority of the fans it seems. I’ve not missed a GP since 1998. This Sunday I’d been out all day at the BTCC so started watching the race late on a recording. I got to lap 48 and fast forwarded the rest, only re-winding once to see Bottas slide slightly wide. I’m seriously bored of tyre and fuel management now, both of these have no place in the pinnacle of motorsport in my opinion. As a long standing fan I’m well aware that the drivers aren’t anywhere near the limit (look how few accidents happen because the drivers are well within their comfort zone) due to having to manage items of the car just to make the end of the race/season. The following driver can’t then capitalise as 3 laps of close following finishes their tyres off too.

Please please please F1 bosses, bring back refuelling and a tyre war by 2021. I promise it’ll be worth it.

24

I had almost the exact same experience as you did in your main paragraph. Agree with the tire war, but not refueling. Refueling (when it was brought back last time) was supposed to offer wildly differing strategies, but the teams figured out the optimum (which is almost the same for everyone) and tried to make their passes in the pits, thereby reducing on track overtaking attempts. No sense in risking a pass when you can do it in the pits. Ross Brawn and MSC we the absolute MASTER at this, and we all know how exciting that era was!

25

Assuming this data is accurate:

http://en.mclarenf-1.com/index.php?page=chart&gp=1003&graf=3&dr1=Lewis%20Hamilton&dr2=Kimi%20Raikkonen

Kimi’s largest lead over Hamilton at the S/F line was 18.2 seconds, and the lap before he pitted it was 17.9s, so it’s not like they missed a slam dunk opportunity, they never had a couple of seconds of margin to play with. Kimi and Hamilton were close at the pit exit, but not side by side or anything. I think at times Kimi appeared to have larger leads at certain points around the track compared to Hamilton, but not where it mattered at the lap end.

26

The gap was 18.23 at Lap 30. Kimi was doing 75.7s while Hamilton was doing 75.9s.

After the radio message that James’ mentioned ‘You are not safe to Raikkonen’, Hamilton did a 75.3 and 75.4 on Lap 31 and 32, so by the time Kimi pitted he had just lost the opportunity (losing about 0.5 seconds in those 2 laps). The pit stop delta was mentioned as ~17.5-18 seconds so 18.23

was reasonably good.

Even then it was close, Kimi’s pit stop was slow 23.645 (Hamilton’s was 23.335, Vettel’s was 23.529), so with a lightning quick pit stop Kimi might have still gotten out ahead.

27

I wasn’t saying it wasn’t possible at all, they would have had a better chance if they’d pitted then of course (although they didn’t know that Hamilton would be able to come back at Kimi then), but what I was saying is there was no point when Ferrari has a comfortable margin to get Kimi out ahead.

28

Here’s an idea for more exciting races: introduce more human error & variation to race strategy decisions. Do this by restricting or eliminating teams’ access to modelling/simulation software (or maybe even computing power generally) for making strategy & other decisions during races. Engineers can receive raw timing & car data, etc, but all they’ll have to actually work with the data will be nothing more than an old graphics calculator from the 90s. Maybe a paper spreadsheet and pencil for kicks.

29

As I have suggested in the past, don’t allow car data outside of the track confines over the race weekend. That would remove the advantage that teams like Mercedes have with 100’s of engineers back at the factory pouring over the data, 24 hours a day, looking for every millisecond of advantage. Only the engineers actually at the track can have input. The next step is to then limit the number of engineers at the track, the same for each team. Sure there can be better engineers in some teams than others, but at least they aren’t outnumbered by the 100’s as is the case now.

30

Despite all the talk of Raikkonen refinding his mojo this season, races like Canada just demonstrate what an underperforming also-ran he has become.

31

Raikkonens’s side of the garage needs cleaning out. Install Ricciardo then see how things will liven up. vettel would be out for revenge, Ricciardo would want to prove that it wasn’t just a one off season and the fans would be seei ng a genuine fight for top ‘dibs’. Ferrari would have a great marketing story and all would benefit. That sounds good to me but will it happen? If only…..

32

@James : In a video on your Facebook Channel (https://www.facebook.com/jamesallenonf1/videos/2034464726572906/), Peter Windsor has mentioned that Bottas is more consistent when the car is not working, and that was the case even in 2017.

Hamilton has been an adaptable driver, so for it to continue for so long is rather strange. Is there any specific reason for it?

33

@ Gary

Oh I see… Cheers

34

Insightful as usual James. I would think Merc would have learnt from the last time they opted not to test a tire how that went in the actual race. I am curious to know what Renault has to say for the fact that they are supplying engines to a team that lapped them. That’s gotta hurt in big way but at the same time they are making progress. Very boring race and don’t anticipate this will change with the remaining races. All overtakes taking place in the pits with under and overcuts. Not ideal. Not entertaining.

35

James, despite the “You are not safe to Raikkonen” message all of us missed the possible Kimi ploy on HAM. You certainly didn’t. Your Tuesday Race Reports remain indispensible.

36

I’m tired of these tyre and fuel management races. I want to see the drivers drive flat out for 70 laps. Now we have this viscous circle of where the optimum is to be conservative because to push you risk ruining tires and losing time in a stop or not making it to the end on fuel. With overtaken so difficult due to dirty air there’s low potential reward for putting. The optimum is like a sad prisoners dilemma where they drive as slowly as they can to win the ‘race’.

37

Not to mention engine or PU management.

38
Richard Mortimer

Eric

For most of F1s history tyres had to last a whole race! Then, Brabham introduced re-fuelling in 1982, to try to gain an advantage. They had crunched the numbers.

After that, we had a period of changing tyres and re-fuelling which made the GPs sprint races. Were they more exciting? Maybe sometimes, at the very most. But, it ended in the most boring period in F1 history – the M Schumacher domination.

Up to recently, the tyre formula has worked quite well, with lots of overcuts and undercuts and differences in tyre performance. Actually, most of the races this year have been quite good. Monaco and Canada have been processional, but James has given the reasons for that.

Also, F1 is addressing it with the new 2019 rules. Think a mandatory 2 stops would help things. Maybe say, all must use 3 compounds too? That would open up a whole load of strategy and overtaking possibilities.

39

Good points.

I’m not sure that I buy that the pit stop and refueling regulations resulted in Schumacher’s domination. I think there were other reasons for that. Yes, there wasn’t a need to pass on track of it could be done in the pits. However, in the Pirelli era without refueling there are still passes in the pits due to under and over cuts.

So what’s the conclusion? Ban pit stops and have 1 set of tires? Maybe. No other series does pit stops like F1 though.

I like your mandatory pit stop idea. Although then there would be more opportunities to pass in the pits. Whereas I’m sure what the fans want is passes on track.

Maybe the simple, albeit difficult, solution is to just have tires and engines the drivers can push with?

40
Richard Mortimer

OK Eric

Was not suggesting that pit stops for both ended up with Michael’s domination. Like you say, that was a combination of other things: exclusive Bridgestone contract; genius team; etc.

You are probably right about the multi / mixed-up pit stop idea: it will result in lots of overtakes in the pits.

Think the real answer (which has part been addressed by the FIA for next year) is a reduction in aero.

Maybe side pods (1978 – Lotus 79 style)! More of a bumper / wing at the front with some adjustment, etc. No sliding skirts though…. Ha!

Think you are right, though, tyres and engines drivers can push with!

If the aero is reduced, that means slower cornering and more braking, plus, higher top-speeds. Bit of a ‘no brainer’ that one!

41

Agree.

I always thought the 2017 regulations would be bad for overtaking due to the increased aero. What we ended up with in 2017 was a highly competitive, and very good season, at the front of the field. I just wonder that the more highly evolved 2018 cars are creating even less overtaking due to increased dirty air. So maybe we will get the less overtaking this year that I expected.

I agree that I hope the 2019 regulations are a step in the right directions.

42

2000 Micheal 1st in the WDC, Rubens 4th

2001 Micheal 1st Rubens 3rd(Mclaren with Mika had 7 retirements and one DNS that year while Montoya who could take the challenge to Micheal had 11 retirements that year)

2002 Actual Ferrari Domination with both driver 1st and 2nd

2003 Micheal 1st with 93 points compared to Kimi who had 91(Kimi would have been WDC if it hadnt been for the 3 retirements he had that year against just one for Micheal)

2004 Ferrari dominate again with both drivers 1st and 2nd

In the 5 years he won the WDC with Ferrari there were only two years where Ferrari truly had an dominant car. Rest all were hard fought victories where his competition just collapsed(except 2003 where Kimi really gave him a run for his money)

43

It’s about time for Mr. Marchionne to deliver another comment on KIMI to boost his performance. We have a triple header coming and it would be nice to motivate KIMI before that. He lost his hope when RIC overtook him in the first lap. Race actually fell in his lap when all 3 in front of him pitted much earlier and left him free air to take advantage. I don’t know why he could not make up lost time and actually fell behind the leaders despite running in free air. SEB was consistently lapping 0.5 sec faster than him in the same car. KIMI was happy with car balance and pace on Saturday but couldn’t do it on Sunday…Mr. Marchionne, your turn please…

44

I also didn’t understand why, with much fresher tyres, Kimi dropped back from Hamilton – he should have been all over the back of him, ready to pounce if the Ham/Ric battle caused a mistake. The only mitigating factor for Kimi is that, to be fair, he didn’t have the upgraded engine, whereas Seb did; who knows how much more fuel saving he had to do.

45

If it were Hamilton, some would say he was saving the engine since it was difficult to pass

46

Jimothy, and you would say he couldn’t keep up due to his poor focus and low talent level.

47

Well I’m sure Kimi was, after it was clear a pass wasn’t on. Kimi was on the old-spec engine of course. The new engine looks a very good step, especially on fuel consumption.

48

Ironic that these very forums were so critical of Marchionne’s “laggard” comments last year…! Maybe he knew something then that the rest of us are just beginning to see now – that Kimi regularly drives below the potential of the car.

That said, maybe the Canada performance was due to his well publicized off-track issues. He gets a pass for this race, but needs to step up for the season shaping next three.

49

We all love KIMI for what he is and what he does. We all want him to keep SEB on his toes. If an occasional Marchionne comment boosts his performance, it’s always welcome. Whatever the comment may be, we will always love KIMI.

50

Kimi didn’t have the new engine upgrade.

He also doesn’t have the second DRS button.

Explains some of the deficit but not all. Leclerc in the seat next. Time for Kimi to wave bye.

51

What is the second DRS button?

52

yes pity that Raikkonen could not overtake Hamilton at the least, specially if it was a possibility at some point in the race.

l read that Hamilton was impaired with a dead bird stock in a brake vent in qualifying. Any truth to that James? At least that would explain his locking tyres each qualif lap. Marc

53

Yes true about qualifying

54

JA, in the interest of increasing the amount of tangible content on your site, it occurred to me that a decent “stat” for discussion would also be the relative effectivness of a drivers inlap and outlap…in fact you could combine those two numbers for each pitstop and rank them. Is the time spent in the pitlane part of those times? If not you could add the pitlane time to that to get a great view of the whole driver/pit crew/strategy effectiveness of a team.

I believe this would be complimentary to the UBS Race Strategy Report…..

…and before DHL get their grubby mits on it i would be trademarking it as the…

“LKFE Make The Cut” Award!

55

Thanks

56
Charles Martin

Could anybody explain to me the vertical axis on the Race History graph? The caption says “gap behind leader”, but if this were the case, Vettel should be at “0” the whole race, not at -20 with Bottas at -15 on lap 35 ???

I tried to grasp the thing since the first race of the season, but I just don’t get it.

57

The horizontal line labeled as 0 represents a theoretical winners constant lap time (finish time of winner/number of laps) so it’s possible for the winners trace to be above or below that line depending on the actual time for each lap. Some will be faster and some will be slower especially in the case of SC/VSC deployments.

But this screen capture does seem off because the winners time doesn’t end up right on the 0 line at the end like it should.

58

The strange thing is that all of Vettel’s laps are faster than his average.

59

That’s how it used to be, but the last few years they’ve changed and are worse than they used to be.

Just like Williams 😕

60

the y axis cannot represent the winner’s average lap time as a constant or else Vettel’s trace (in this instance) would start at and finish at zero. The graph used to denote this, but hasn’t done since last season. It MAY represent something like the average race time of the top 6 divided by the number of laps. But no one seems to be able to answer definitively.

61

The “Leader” is a hypothetical car which covers the race at an average speed. (Total Race Distance / Vettel’s Time) = 68*4.361/1.28.31.377 = 201.0086 kmph, which is approximately a 90 sec lap.

Eg. Take a 3 lap race where Vettel takes 3 seconds to finish 1 lap, 2 seconds for the second lap and 1 second for the 3rd lap as his fuel burns up.

The leader would then expected to run at 2 seconds per lap. So Vettel would go from -1, to 0 to +1.

62
Charles Martin

Oh, that makes sense. Thank you guys!

63

James,

How do you feel about the lack of ‘racing’ we’ve witnessed this year, particularly when it’s laid so bare at a track like Montreal?

We’ve had some safety-car influenced events that have mixed things up, but it’s difficult to argue that it has been a stellar season on track.

As an insider, what’s the feeling on the ground? Are teams and sponsors hugely concerned? Given Liberty’s model is charging premium prices for a premium product how does that gel with the broader F1 community, particularly against the backdrop of a (potentially controversial) shake-up of rules and budgets in the offing?

As a lifelong fan I’m finding it harder to reconcile LM’s focus on the peripheral show, while the core product regularly underwhelms. This is especially pertinent given the imminent departure of all FTA coverage in the UK next year.

64

It’s odd, we had some decent racing st the start of the season but recently it’s been very difficult

I think all are aware hence the front wing etc changes rushed through for 2019

The product is well short of where they want it to be from a racing perspective

Also the stubborn gap between top three and the rest

65

@ James…another question. Given that you are privy to the comments here and the basic thrust of the core issues are the teams/Liberty in any accord with those expressed?

66

So the charts were provided by Williams. I wonder if they themselves ever look to them ^^

67

So lewis had problems that bad…..not a bad race for fifth then

I thinks ves out performed his car, lot of praise for bottas for beating lewis, but the golden boy ricc got put in his place by ves…..no one recognises this, after monaco ricc was like god and compared to senna schumi etc …….oh yeah again bottas smashed lewis lol, but looking in detail….how good is ricc and bottas.

Championship will be between lewis/vettle and maybe ves if hes lucky

68

P82

So after Monaco Ricc was God and compared to Senna and Schumi. Who made these claims? Or was it just you looking for your own headline? I reckon starting 6th and finishing 4th wasn’t a bad day at the office, don’t you think? Also I’m struggling to understand what “put into place means” or how can a racer defy the laws of physics by outperforming his car. And the comparison between Ricc and Bottas means what? There’s a few questions for you.

69

@ P82…for the thousandth time…no one can outperform the car!!!

70

chuck norris can.

71

…and maybe the Hoff

72

chuck norris can.

Agreed, if David Carradine was still alive, i believe he would too after winning death race 2000 lol

73

A bit rich re: Ricciardo – there was a chance that he could have gotten by with a more shrewd strategy, and his ultimate pace would have been impacted somewhat by having to deal with Hamilton. Plus Daniel could have been driving a second-hand bag of bolts following the issues with the power unit allocation after Monte Carlo fried his MGU-K.

No way the championship fight will feature Verstappen – he has already given away way too much ground.

74

I was actually hoping that Daniel was going to do another hot lap on the Hypers as he seemed to have enough pace on those tyres to jump Max as well as Lewis. Only going off my feel for the race at the time, but it certainly looked to be on the cards.

75

Ricciardo was running a cobbled together engine package with a recycled MGUK that had been discarded previously. He had obvious driveability issues on Friday and Saturday that weren’t fully overcome for Sunday. Despite that he overtook Raikkonen off the start, performed an overcut on Hamilton on well worn hypersoft tyres, held out Hamilton for the rest of the race even with Hamilton being given every power mode possible in the Mercedes engine and then set the fastest lap of the race on the last lap (well what should have been the last lap). Seems like a pretty awesome performance to me.

76

And there’s the rub. Ham and Ricc were both hampered by under performing equipment. But more than that EVERYONE was hampered by underperforming tyres.

77

@ aezy doc…According to Mercedes chief strategist, Vowles, the cooling changes made during the pitstop allowed Hamilton to regain his full suite of ‘beanz’ and he was technically able to mount an attack.

78

Not with the current Pirelli’s and the aero we have at present. Often in the DRS zone but then having to back out to prevent tyres over heating and then finally to ensure the engine made it to the end. Back markers seemed to get in the way too. I’d love to see Ham and Ric actually able to race without these hindrances!

79

@ Gary…very good post summary.

80

One swallow does not a summer make.

81

African, or European Swallow?

82

Huh? I… I don’t know that. Arghhhhhh!

84

Really funny post I did laugh put loud about Verstappen. But hey wild unchecked optimism based on 0 facts will always put a smile on my face. 😁

85

James, Ricciardo gave some hints that he had more speed when it was needed. First on his in-lap to set up the overcut on Lewis and later for fastest lap, which was lost to the shortening of the race. He was closing on Max until lap 37, then starts to drift.

Is there any evidence of team orders, was he asked to play it safe?

86

Interesting Squigs…

The same occurred to me when Dan mentioned that he told the team he thought he could maintain the inlap pace he was on for a few more laps, but they told him to come in after just one.

When you see how close he was behind Max when he exited the pits…i think i know why…

87

Mr Squiggle…It crossed my mind that his fastest lap right at the end was done to send a message to all and sundry as Verstappen had put one in on the prior lap. Due to the farcical flag issue DR lost that FL for the race. That tells me something…

88

Whay does it tell you? This should be interesting.

89

Not heard that

90
Tornillo Amarillo

Williams’ cars are undrivable, now one of them caused an accident in Montreal and they should be banned for safety reasons. Unfortunately. Until the next upgrade.

I don’t know if the rules contemplate that, James?

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