Hamilton quick but Red Bull strong in stints

2011 Brazilian GP practice analysis

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Mark Webber, Red Bull, Interlagos, 2011

Lewis Hamilton was fastest in the second session and said he was happy with his car’s long-run pace.

But he added he is wary about Red Bull’s potential: “Degradation on the new [soft] tyre seems pretty acceptable; I was still doing decent times at the end of my run. I think there’s still a bit more to come, but we’re looking strong for the rest of the weekend.

“I also felt quite comfortable with the set-up changes we made going into this afternoon’s session, and our long runs seem to be pretty competitive too. You never know what the Red Bulls are doing, but I’m comfortable that we’re there or thereabouts.”

Looking at the data below, a dozen laps into their stints both Red Bull drivers were able to lap closer to their original times than Hamilton was.

That, combined Red Bull’s tendency to hide more of their true pace on Friday, indicates the RB7s are once again in a strong position this weekend.

Here’s the data from the first two practice sessions.

Longest stint comparison – second session

  • Pirelli believe the soft tyre will last for up to 25 laps and the medium 35 laps, with the soft tyre around 0.8s/lap faster.

This chart shows all the drivers’ lap times (in seconds) during their longest unbroken stint:


Sebastian Vettel78.60277.9677.62277.84979.6479.34878.18479.00179.30978.08977.12177.19277.92177.236
Mark Webber78.20677.66577.94277.62477.81977.69980.03577.48180.13676.99476.83383.96476.98876.908
Lewis Hamilton78.69178.32478.23881.48381.27778.98678.43583.5777.96479.83577.82979.6478.26578.536
Jenson Button79.36383.0778.67578.66779.33678.41278.40878.88578.45679.396
Fernando Alonso80.53673.973.9680.69973.73279.57973.598
Felipe Massa78.7978.11678.93979.71278.45581.58377.98779.13577.95978.4478.30378.192
Michael Schumacher79.44779.10179.05788.13578.74478.78679.18179.18379.53589.98382.51680.11881.258
Nico Rosberg79.01778.9578.69278.75679.02178.86679.04478.8678.98279.57380.036
Bruno Senna78.48476.88377.20178.88677.10476.834
Vitaly Petrov81.46681.38981.68881.53979.68779.06879.33680.397
Rubens Barrichello80.43780.12881.74787.43682.32582.26280.8188.81880.34486.84679.78887.77382.17
Pastor Maldonado80.91980.16279.61679.58480.1279.76481.86681.28981.1280.94789.00381.40181.31880.14680.52480.629
Adrian Sutil78.68779.85279.71279.55979.11178.5678.96478.36179.06778.52978.305
Paul di Resta79.71378.85278.71278.58778.60478.50778.380.15680.21680.0481.74579.06779.71979.40878.62179.78981.39178.914
Kamui Kobayashi79.69182.38179.44481.4381.45182.09879.49579.22779.499
Sergio Perez76.43575.87380.67975.71979.66975.849
Sebastien Buemi79.59579.51579.30179.28679.57381.0280.30783.43280.07482.24182.58779.51382.24279.57579.507
Jaime Alguersuari80.20480.05279.89379.61781.61879.5979.85779.86279.93181.44881.3480.51684.20382.24482.80981.54281.383
Heikki Kovalainen79.53879.60979.66879.65279.86984.18879.99280.2381.99581.24182.42980.69381.885.282
Jarno Trulli80.06280.98383.99780.53280.85583.28182.43984.9682.9280.27780.191
Daniel Ricciardo81.7483.05583.17581.61881.60183.88482.00485.49782.3581.23981.55181.15781.15381.346
Vitantonio Liuzzi80.77380.52981.19182.41482.30282.49581.94581.90382.03281.70681.13481.69480.932
Timo Glock81.57881.00680.86681.14980.87381.45480.96182.81483.26681.98282.26183.48293.07381.09780.79681.03380.55
Jerome d’Ambrosio82.86682.61583.28182.53181.89982.01282.22882.92582.17682.03282.33682.013

Ultimate lap times – second session

An ultimate lap is a driver’s fastest three sector times combined.

  • Lotus continue to move away from Virgin and HRT and closer to the midfield. A new rear wing design brought them within half a second of Williams over the three sectors, and over a second-and-a-half faster than Virgin.
  • Jarno Trulli said: “We need to do a bit of work on fine tuning the balance, and I think there’s more to come from the new rear wing, but the update is working and hopefully we can show in qualifying the sort of pace we’ve had recently in the races”
CarDriverCarUltimate lapGapDeficit to best
13Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1’13.3920.000
21Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’13.5500.1580.009
32Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault1’13.5820.1900.005
45Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’13.5950.2030.003
54Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’13.6210.2290.166
67Michael SchumacherMercedes1’13.7230.3310.000
76Felipe MassaFerrari1’13.7290.3370.021
88Nico RosbergMercedes1’13.8210.4290.051
914Adrian SutilForce India-Mercedes1’14.1440.7520.000
1015Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1’14.4651.0730.342
1117Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1’14.7461.3540.224
1210Vitaly PetrovRenault1’14.7891.3970.067
139Bruno SennaRenault1’14.8591.4670.072
1416Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1’14.9801.5880.039
1519Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso-Ferrari1’15.1391.7470.249
1618Sebastien BuemiToro Rosso-Ferrari1’15.1521.7600.112
1712Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Cosworth1’15.4042.0120.275
1811Rubens BarrichelloWilliams-Cosworth1’15.7862.3940.117
1920Heikki KovalainenLotus-Renault1’16.1762.7840.162
2021Jarno TrulliLotus-Renault1’16.2982.9060.000
2124Timo GlockVirgin-Cosworth1’17.9754.5830.076
2225Jerome D’AmbrosioVirgin-Cosworth1’18.0314.6390.000
2322Daniel RicciardoHRT-Cosworth1’18.2214.8290.146
2423Vitantonio LiuzziHRT-Cosworth1’18.3284.9360.148

Complete practice times – first session

  • Both of today’s sessions were run in dry conditions – but as Paul di Resta notes there could be rain on the way: “It’s probably one of the best Fridays we’ve had in terms of collecting data – although it remains to be seen how useful that information will be if the weather changes over the weekend.”
CarDriverCarBest lapGapStint lapAt timeLaps
12Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault1’13.8113/57326
24Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’13.8250.0145/56325
33Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1’13.9610.1506/66620
41Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’14.0250.2148/84428
56Felipe MassaFerrari1’14.5070.6965/54834
65Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’14.5410.7305/56525
77Michael SchumacherMercedes1’15.1621.3518/86928
814Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes1’15.1781.3675/76628
915Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1’15.2411.4307/86931
108Nico RosbergMercedes1’15.3211.5101/56029
1119Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso-Ferrari1’15.4681.6578/83829
1210Romain GrosjeanRenault1’15.5471.7366/64817
1311Rubens BarrichelloWilliams-Cosworth1’15.6631.8525/57627
149Bruno SennaRenault1’15.7321.9216/67032
1516Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1’15.7471.9367/74231
1612Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Cosworth1’15.8362.0256/76927
1717Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1’15.9792.1685/67435
1818Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Ferrari1’16.0522.2415/57233
1920Heikki KovalainenLotus-Renault1’16.5142.7039/99333
2021Luiz RaziaLotus-Renault1’17.5953.7841/98031
2124Timo GlockVirgin-Cosworth1’18.1404.3291/45628
2225Jerome D’AmbrosioVirgin-Cosworth1’18.6534.8425/56429
2322Daniel RicciardoHRT-Cosworth1’18.9525.1416/67033
2423Jan CharouzHRT-Cosworth1’19.5775.7665/76437

Complete practice times – second session

  • Lap times in the second session were almost one-and-a-half seconds slower than they were in 2011. “Maybe the tyres Pirelli have brought here are harder than the Bridgestones and also the temperatures are higher,” said Felipe Massa.
  • Massa’s team mate Fernando Alonso is concerned about the pace of the Mercedes: “I think that in the dry we are a bit less competitive than usual: I don’t think I can fight with the Red Bulls and McLarens and, on top of that, one of the Mercedes is very quick.”
  • Jan Charouz was satisfied with his first run in an F1 session: “I think I did quite a good job as I was pretty close to Daniel which was the main goal, I don’t think five tenths are too much.”
CarDriverCarBest lapGapStint lapAt timeLaps
13Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-Mercedes1’13.3923/35935
21Sebastian VettelRed Bull-Renault1’13.5590.1673/36441
32Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault1’13.5870.1953/36341
45Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’13.5980.2067/76635
57Michael SchumacherMercedes1’13.7230.3311/25038
66Felipe MassaFerrari1’13.7500.3581/16139
74Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes1’13.7870.3952/25536
88Nico RosbergMercedes1’13.8720.4803/34942
914Adrian SutilForce India-Mercedes1’14.1440.7522/26841
1015Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes1’14.8071.4152/45548
1110Vitaly PetrovRenault1’14.8561.4643/37238
129Bruno SennaRenault1’14.9311.5394/47037
1317Sergio PerezSauber-Ferrari1’14.9701.5785/56131
1416Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari1’15.0191.6273/52845
1518Sebastien BuemiToro Rosso-Ferrari1’15.2641.8721/54844
1619Jaime AlguersuariToro Rosso-Ferrari1’15.3881.9965/64741
1712Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Cosworth1’15.6792.2874/55843
1811Rubens BarrichelloWilliams-Cosworth1’15.9032.5114/55740
1921Jarno TrulliLotus-Renault1’16.2982.9063/46736
2020Heikki KovalainenLotus-Renault1’16.3382.9467/76148
2125Jerome D’AmbrosioVirgin-Cosworth1’18.0314.6391/47239
2224Timo GlockVirgin-Cosworth1’18.0514.6593/45744
2322Daniel RicciardoHRT-Cosworth1’18.3674.9752/65242
2423Vitantonio LiuzziHRT-Cosworth1’18.4765.0843/65642

Speed trap – second session

  • Toro Rosso were quickest through the speed traps as they have been in several recent races. Jaime Alguersauri said: “We experimented with different levels of downforce over the two sessions and I think I felt happier with the car’s behaviour in the morning, although we will have to assess the data before making a decision about this element of the package.”
#DriverCarEngineMax speedGap
118Sebastien BuemiToro RossoFerrari318.4
219Jaime AlguersuariToro RossoFerrari317.31.1
317Sergio PerezSauberFerrari312.85.6
411Rubens BarrichelloWilliamsCosworth312.65.8
515Paul di RestaForce IndiaMercedes311.17.3
69Bruno SennaRenaultRenault310.87.6
714Adrian SutilForce IndiaMercedes310.87.6
812Pastor MaldonadoWilliamsCosworth310.28.2
916Kamui KobayashiSauberFerrari309.98.5
105Fernando AlonsoFerrariFerrari309.68.8
1110Vitaly PetrovRenaultRenault309.29.2
128Nico RosbergMercedesMercedes3099.4
132Mark WebberRed BullRenault3099.4
146Felipe MassaFerrariFerrari308.79.7
157Michael SchumacherMercedesMercedes308.310.1
163Lewis HamiltonMcLarenMercedes307.610.8
171Sebastian VettelRed BullRenault307.211.2
1822Daniel RicciardoHRTCosworth306.511.9
194Jenson ButtonMcLarenMercedes306.412
2020Heikki KovalainenLotusRenault305.612.8
2121Jarno TrulliLotusRenault303.714.7
2223Vitantonio LiuzziHRTCosworth303.415
2324Timo GlockVirginCosworth301.616.8
2425Jerome D’AmbrosioVirginCosworth301.117.3

2011 Brazilian Grand Prix

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    Keith Collantine
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    21 comments on “Hamilton quick but Red Bull strong in stints”

    1. Very interesting observation from James Allen:

      “…Red Bull tends to do its long runs using the fuel load it would typically start the second stint of the race with, while McLaren tend to run with full tanks. Allowing for the difference in weight their lap times are closely matched…”

      It will be tight (at least I hope so!).

      1. Nice find.

        Is it just me or the ‘longest stint’ of Fernando is not a normal heavy fuel stint at all? I mean he was in and out of the pits even when others have been doing their runs at the end of FP2.

        He seems to be the the unknown variable for me this weekend so far.

        I can only hope he would match the pace of the Red Bulls and the McLarens come Sunday.

        Also Schumacher and Rosberg are very very closely matched on race pace. I expect Q pace to be in the latter’s favour tomorrow.

        1. He was testing a few 2012 parts, which compromised his set-up time. I hope he’s competitive on race day but based on his comments, he wont be challenging Red Bull or McLaren unless its wet.

    2. In FP2 Sauber were just ahead of Toro Rosso. STR usually has better pace in the races. The battle for 7th place in the Constructors’ Championship will be toughly fought for.

      1. @Fixy Well the last two circuits have favoured STR with huge straights. Not so much the case here.

    3. What we can say for sure in terms of race pace is that in the in-team battles Hamilton seems to have the upper hand again over Button – but Vettel and Webber are more closely matched than before.

      1. @atticus-2

        Vettel and Webber are more closely matched than before

        I wouldn’t hold my breath on that if i were you

        1. Their long run lap times seems to be quite close. There aren’t different fuel loads among team mates, are there?

          Aside from that Vettel is able to squeeze out the time needed when it counts.

          That why he is probably the next ‘great’ after Schumacher. He has this ‘Vettel factor’. But then again Hamilton and Alonso have theirs, so it’s still up for grabs. Time will tell.

          1. @atticus-2 Teams could very well run different fuel loads. That way you don’t only get 1 set of data to look at; but you get more sets of data to analyze.

            1. You’re right, from an engineering perspective having both cars out doing the same thing makes no sense. Maybe Webbo was on a 1/2 tank while Vettel was full? Might explain the delta.

            2. @stscm hard to say. When I was a track side engineer in another form of racing once upon a time, we would split the testing runs. However if Red Bull suspect tyre wear and/or degradation is very different between Mark and Sebastian; then they can’t really use the data from one guy for another.

    4. Lewis Hamilton was fastest in the second session and sad he was happy with his car’s long-run pace.

      Wow Mixed Feelings from Lewis there,Only Kidding Typo there Keith

      1. Fixed, thanks.

    5. IDK if it’s a trend (like if they’ve been always so slower) but it looks like the back teams (HRT and Virgin; Lotus are slow usually AFAIremember) are setting up for wet.

    6. Anyone know why the Torro Rosso’s were so much faster in FP2 than everyone else?

      1. They have been fastest in the speed traps for a couple of races now (since Korea).

    7. Some interesting points to note… and a few predictions thrown in for good measure :)

      Alguersuari 6 tenths quicker than Vergne in FP1.
      Vergne won’t be on the grid in Australia IMO.

      Grosjean 2 tenths quicker than Senna in FP2.
      Senna won’t be in a Renault in Australia IMO (unfortunately as I am a fan…).

      Hulkenberg quicker 1 tenth than Di Resta in FP1.
      Hulkenberg to partner Di Resta at Force India next year IMO.

      Ricciardo quicker than Liuzzi, this really is becoming the norm now.
      Ricciardo in a STR next year, probably in place of Buemi which IMO would be rough as Buemi has been consistently a tenth or two ahead of Alguersuari from day one.

      1. @aussierod Don’t forget Helmut Marko calls all the shots in terms of RB drivers. According to the latest rumors, 2012 will see Vergne-Alguersuari at STR, and Ricciardo will be farmed out to Caterham (in Trulli’s slot)

      2. Yeah I kept an eye on the rookies as well.

        I wouldn’t judge Vergne so quickly. After only a couple of sessions Ricciardo was slower than Liuzzi too. The newbies need time. Not much – talent shines through, the bigger it is, the less time it needs, see also the debut of Alonso and Vettel. So yeah, Vergne maybe not a top driver, but I wouldn’t assess him right now.

        I agree on Ricciardo, he deserves a place, still, Liuzzi is not a hard driver to beat, I think.

        I agree on Grosjean as well, this is a clear cut case. Another successful season in GP2 may did him wonders. He seems to care less than Senna, a less serious guy based on the few glimps of FOM coverage – but he is instantly quicker.

        As for Force India, I agree, Hulkenberg is probably the best of the three on the long run, he generally outpaces either Sutil or di Resta, when he gets a chance. But as the season progrsses I’m not so assured di Resta owns Sutil. Di Resta made a lot of effort, concentrated so hard, gave so much energy to deliver at the beginning of the season, he could be more exhaused than Sutil. Sutil, meanwhile, seems to be less tranquil despite his recent upward trend. He was the one who made it no secret he wanted to know the line-up for next year – and it’s not a good sign. Perhaps he fears VM would choose di Resta and Nico – fears more than the latter two.

        1. Yeah I agree with all that Atticus, and don’t get me wrong, I did not intend to judge Vergne, I don’t know enough about him.

          I do know James Allen is of the opinion that Ricciardo was more impressive in the Young Driver Test in ’10 than Vergne was this year (according to his sources at Red Bull), and hence more likely to get the STR drive in ’12.

          IMO Vergne’s only chance at a STR drive in ’12 was to really shine in Free Practice in these last two GPs but it doesn’t look like he has done enough. He needs more time and will get Friday practice in ’12 to hone his skills I’m sure.

          He’ll get his chance, but I stand by my opinion it won’t be in Australia in ’12.

    8. I like this

      Lotus continue to move away from Virgin and HRT and closer to the midfield. A new rear wing design brought them within half a second of Williams over the three sectors, and over a second-and-a-half faster than Virgin.
      Jarno Trulli said: “We need to do a bit of work on fine tuning the balance, and I think there’s more to come from the new rear wing, but the update is working and hopefully we can show in qualifying the sort of pace we’ve had recently in the races”

      Shows us how much all the talk about in season testing sessions would just mean we see less running on the fridays (as we had before they cut down on that).
      Only thing they should now do to allow new drivers to get some running time in the car is, to make it mandatory for each team to give their 3rd drivers (or just talents at random) a minimum amount of FP2 drives and pre-season testing days.
      That way we would see the likes of RBR, Ferrari, McLaren and Mercedes forced to give these guys some seat time as well and make it more likely a 3rd driver will actually be able to drive halfway competatively in case he’s needed.

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