The Mexican Grand Prix was largely a one-stop strategy affair as usual. But the first-lap collision and later Virtual Safety Car prompted a few novel strategies.
When the two title contenders limped into the pits at the end of lap one with damage the strategic option for them was obvious: Stick a set of softs on and try to run to the end. They might have stuck with that plan: Felipe Massa did 67 laps, almost the whole race distance, on one set of softs.
But Nico Hulkenberg’s stoppage, which caused a Virtual Safety Car period, allowed some of the drivers ahead of Vettel and Hamilton to make pit stops while losing less time. That meant the best the title rivals could now so was get onto a softer tyre than their rivals in the hope of making up ground.
This worked to an extent. But Sebastian Vettel never looked likely of making it as high as the second place he needed, and that’s how it turned out.
Only two drivers tried starting on the race on anything other than the ultra-softs: Fernando Alonso and Romain Grosjean. This explains why the McLaren driver was so insistent that Grosjean receive a penalty for abusing track limits, as being stuck behind the only other driver on the same strategy compromised his chances in the race.
2017 Mexican Grand Prix tyre strategies
The tyre strategies for each driver:
|Stint 1||Stint 2||Stint 3|
|Max Verstappen||Ultra soft (32)||Super soft (39)|
|Valtteri Bottas||Ultra soft (32)||Super soft (39)|
|Kimi Raikkonen||Ultra soft (32)||Soft (39)|
|Sebastian Vettel||Ultra soft (1)||Soft (31)||Ultra soft (39)|
|Esteban Ocon||Ultra soft (20)||Soft (50)|
|Lance Stroll||Ultra soft (32)||Super soft (38)|
|Sergio Perez||Ultra soft (18)||Soft (32)||Ultra soft (20)|
|Kevin Magnussen||Ultra soft (31)||Soft (39)|
|Lewis Hamilton||Ultra soft (1)||Soft (30)||Super soft (39)|
|Fernando Alonso||Super soft (32)||Ultra soft (38)|
|Felipe Massa||Ultra soft (3)||Soft (67)|
|Stoffel Vandoorne||Ultra soft (31)||Super soft (39)|
|Pierre Gasly||Ultra soft (31)||Super soft (39)|
|Pascal Wehrlein||Ultra soft (4)||Soft (65)|
|Romain Grosjean||Super soft (31)||Soft (31)||Ultra soft (7)|
|Carlos Sainz Jnr||Ultra soft (2)||Soft (29)||Ultra soft (28)|
|Marcus Ericsson||Ultra soft (28)||Super soft (27)|
|Brendon Hartley||Ultra soft (30)|
|Nico Hulkenberg||Ultra soft (19)||Soft (5)|
|Daniel Ricciardo||Ultra soft (5)|
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2017 Mexican Grand Prix pit stop times
How long each driver’s pit stops took:
|Driver||Team||Pit stop time||Gap||On lap|
|6||Sergio Perez||Force India||22.528||0.770||50|
|8||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||22.570||0.812||32|
|11||Esteban Ocon||Force India||22.665||0.907||20|
|12||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso||22.709||0.951||31|
|14||Carlos Sainz Jnr||Renault||22.852||1.094||2|
|15||Sergio Perez||Force India||22.903||1.145||18|
|16||Carlos Sainz Jnr||Renault||23.035||1.277||31|
2017 Mexican Grand Prix
- Alonso “cries like a baby” and the stewards always listen – Steiner
- 2017 Mexican Grand Prix team radio transcript
- 2017 Mexican Grand Prix weekend Star Performers
- Top ten pictures from the 2017 Mexican Grand Prix
- ‘Race director, look at the race please’: Mexican GP team radio highlights
2 comments on “2017 Mexican Grand Prix tyre strategies and pit stops”
F1 in Figures (@f1infigures)
29th October 2017, 23:49
It was Hartley‘s stoppage, right?
30th October 2017, 5:19
Yes it was. Hulk stopped on a safer location and they only waved (double?) yellow flags
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