2016 Russian Grand Prix tyre strategies and pit stops

2016 Russian Grand Prix tyre strategies and pit stops

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As expected there was little variety among the teams’ tactic for the Russian Grand Prix.

A one-stop strategy starting one super-softs and switching to softs was the preferred approach for all the drivers who finished inside the top ten. The only ones to deviate from this were Felipe Massa, who had the benefit of a free pit stop at the end of the race, and Sergio Perez, who picked up a puncture at the start.

Massa’s first visit to the pits was the quickest of the race as Williams again demonstrated their greatly improved pit stop performance.

The first-lap carnage forced Perez, Esteban Gutierrez and both Red Bull drivers into the pits for repairs and fresh rubber. Red Bull decided to emulate Nico Rosberg’s tactics of 2014 in trying to run to the end of the race on Pirelli’s medium tyres – a surprising decision given they’d brought ten sets of super-softs for the weekend.

Daniel Ricciardo abandoned his set of mediums, switching to a two-stop strategy in order to take a set of softs at the end of the race. His pace improved significantly – within two laps he was over two seconds quicker – but it wasn’t enough for him to carry his damaged car into the points.

2016 Russian Grand Prix tyre strategies

The tyre strategies for each driver:

Stint 1Stint 2Stint 3
Nico RosbergSuper soft (21)Soft (32)
Lewis HamiltonSuper soft (17)Soft (36)
Kimi RaikkonenSuper soft (20)Soft (33)
Valtteri BottasSuper soft (16)Soft (37)
Felipe MassaSuper soft (18)Soft (28)Super soft (7)
Fernando AlonsoSuper soft (21)Soft (31)
Kevin MagnussenSuper soft (16)Soft (36)
Romain GrosjeanSuper soft (17)Soft (35)
Sergio PerezSuper soft (1)Soft (26)Soft (25)
Jenson ButtonSuper soft (20)Soft (32)
Carlos Sainz JnrSuper soft (11)Soft (41)
Daniel RicciardoSuper soft (1)Medium (28)Soft (23)
Jolyon PalmerSuper soft (14)Soft (38)
Marcus EricssonSoft (1)Super soft (27)Super soft (24)
Daniil KvyatSuper soft (1)Medium (51)
Felipe NasrSuper soft (12)Soft (40)
Esteban GutierrezSoft (1)Medium (8)Medium (43)
Pascal WehrleinSuper soft (13)Soft (26)Super soft (12)
Max VerstappenSuper soft (22)Soft (11)
Sebastian VettelSuper soft (1)
Nico HulkenbergSuper soft (1)
Rio HaryantoSuper soft (1)

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2016 Russian Grand Prix pit stop times

How long each driver’s pit stops took:

DriverTeamPit stop timeGapOn lap
1Felipe MassaWilliams29.55118
2Nico RosbergMercedes29.7090.15821
3Fernando AlonsoMcLaren29.7510.20021
4Valtteri BottasWilliams29.8410.29016
5Lewis HamiltonMercedes30.0010.45017
6Felipe MassaWilliams30.0650.51446
7Felipe NasrSauber30.2590.70812
8Sergio PerezForce India30.4000.84927
9Marcus EricssonSauber30.4330.88228
10Kimi RaikkonenFerrari30.4980.94720
11Marcus EricssonSauber30.5290.9781
12Max VerstappenToro Rosso30.5531.00222
13Jenson ButtonMcLaren30.5801.02920
14Kevin MagnussenRenault30.5851.03416
15Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso30.8051.25411
16Jolyon PalmerRenault30.8051.25414
17Daniel RicciardoRed Bull31.2051.65429
18Romain GrosjeanHaas31.4201.86917
19Pascal WehrleinManor31.4331.88213
20Sergio PerezForce India32.8003.2491
21Daniil KvyatRed Bull38.9069.3558
22Esteban GutierrezHaas40.16910.6181
23Daniil KvyatRed Bull41.28211.7311
24Daniel RicciardoRed Bull47.76318.2121
25Pascal WehrleinManor57.15127.60039

NB. Kvyat’s lap eight pit stop was to serve a ten-second stop-go penalty. Esteban Gutierrez also pitted on lap nine to serve a drive-through penalty (not listed).

2016 Russian Grand Prix

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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3 comments on “2016 Russian Grand Prix tyre strategies and pit stops”

  1. Except for Massa, every driver that was on a different strategy than Rosberg was involved in the first lap crashes. The most boring race strategy wise. I cannot believe how they did not bring the ultra soft here.

    1. A matter of calender timing apparently @xtwl, as the ultrasoft tyre was new, and thus only tested in March, when the choices for this non-European race had to already have been made, Pirelli didn’t want to force teams to choose how many of an untested tyre to take. Seems sensible, if a missed opportunity.

      1. @bosyber Thank you, now that you mention it I remember reading it.

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