Very cool but dry race expected for F1’s Nurburgring return

2020 Eifel Grand Prix weather

Posted on

| Written by

After warm races at Mugello and Sochi, Formula 1’s return to the Nurburgring is set to be the coldest race of the 2020 season.

During its most recent spell on the calendar, the Nurburgring’s F1 races were held in July. The past two F1 races at the track saw substantially different conditions: The 2013 race was warm, but two years earlier much cooler conditions saw race day temperatures struggle to reach just 14C.

This weekend’s race is forecast to be even cooler than that. This is partly to be expected as F1 is making its latest ever visit to the venue: Its first grand prix on the shortened track in 1984 was held on October 7th, but none of the races since, nor any of the previous visits to the Nordschleife took place as late in the year as this weekend.

Friday could be the only day air temperatures reach double digits, rising from 10C during first practice to around 12C during the second session. However the forecast indicates the whole day should be dry.

A similar pattern is expected across the following two days. Saturday’s qualifying session looks set to be dry, if cold, at just 9C. There’s a chance rain may affect the third practice first thing in the morning. Track temperatures will be low, too, as the sun won’t appear until 11am local time, only an hour before the start of that session.

The very cool conditions will remain on Sunday. Air temperatures will be just 8C for the race, which is going to make it very challenging for drivers to make their tyres work. There is a low risk of rain, which rises towards the end of the race, which could add some drama to the final laps.

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

For more updates on the track conditions during each session keep an eye on RaceFans Live and the RaceFans Twitter account.

2020 Eifel Grand Prix

Browse all 2020 Eifel Grand Prix articles

Author information

Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a motorsport and automotive journalist with a particular interest in hybrid systems, electrification, batteries and new fuel technologies....

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

29 comments on “Very cool but dry race expected for F1’s Nurburgring return”

  1. Exciting stuff. Throughout my lifetime (I’m 36) I always remembered races being hot or wet. I don’t remember a race ever being held at 8 degrees C (during the last 28 years.

    1. @broke84 That’s, of course, because races generally take place at times of year when the air temps are from around 20 C upwards.

  2. What would be the lowest temperatures feasible for a race? Is the danger of ice the only real limiting factor?

    1. @Broccoliface The 1978 Canadian GP took place at 5 C, but those times of F1 were quite a bit different to these days, so I don’t know for certain. For certainty, at some point, low temps could become a safety issue, but not necessarily one specific figure that would define the edge. Ice could be at least one limiting factor.

    2. Not sure about F1 but in Formula E our coldest race ever was 7C. You can see your breath at 6C.

      1. @hazelsouthwell That’s interesting Hazel. Out of interest which race was it? I quite fancy having a nosey back at that race now. Thanks

        1. @Eurobrun It was Paris in Season 2 (2016) – the same race had a try at being the coldest last season, even bringing out the hail but it didn’t manage to rival the incredibly bracing temperatures there.

          Every year I forget to wear thermals to Les Invalides.

          1. Thanks @hazelsouthwell
            Sorry, didn’t see that comment until just now. More races should have hail!
            Although only when you have shelter :)

  3. It should be good for DAS and cars with the most downforce, teams that are good with setups, and drivers who can hover on the edge of grip, beyond the smooth zone. Yes :)

  4. Strange my sources saying rain Saterday and Sunday after that much colder around 3 celsius.

    Ofcourse how closer we get how better the prediction will be. But i am sure during those days wil be raining but the question is during qualify and race that is such small window. And there are showers not continues rain with our luck it will be dry.

    1. @macleod Your source(s) must be unreliable. Here’s what I use for weather-checking purpose:
      What’s in this article is more or less in line with the above linked-site and other places show the same figures as well, so pretty easy choice which one(s) to trust more. 8 C is more realistic as the highest daytime temp for this time of year than 3 C anyway, LOL.

      1. @jerejj Thank you for the information I check that site and the one is normal used 1-2 days ago and it was bad.

        is the one i used and i see the rain is much less then when i checked it!

      2. @jerejj If you check now you see the chance for light rain at the start of the qualifly and race and friday morning rain but midday dry.

        Lets say the weather is very random over there :)

  5. 12, 8, and 8 degrees for the respective three days of running at the moment, so yes, definitely the coldest event for this season thus far. Four out of the last five (Montmelo, Monza, Mugello, Sochi Autodrom) had daytime air temps in the latter half of the 20s or even slightly into the 30s, so this weekend’s figures are like a day-night difference to the previous ones. A couple of races on this track in the 1990s took place close to this year’s date as well. Nevertheless, an unideal time of year for F1 there, but I guess the three Spanish tracks (Jerez, Valencia, Aragon) that hold the necessary FIA grade 1 license weren’t available. Otherwise, one or maybe two of these would’ve probably joined instead of Nurburgring and or Imola/Istanbul. Oh well, the good thing is that having European tracks this far into the Northern Hemisphere autumn is only going to be a ‘one-off’ thing as next year’s race schedule should be at least closer to normal, if not entirely, i.e., races on warmer climate zones at this time of year.
    BTW, the sunset times are 7:45, 7:47, and 7:48 (for practice, QLF, and race day respectively), so I don’t get the ”sun won’t appear until 11am local time” part.

    1. Clouds cover is the problem

    2. ‘sunrise’ times, of course, not sunset.

    3. @jerejj I meant that the sun won’t come out from behind the clouds until then, not that it wouldn’t be daylight.

      1. @hazelsouthwell Thank you for the clarification. I got confused initially knowing that the sunrise times for these days aren’t 11:00.

  6. One of the better & for me most rapidly updated weather sites.
    Looks like wet & windy Friday but no rain Saturday or Sunday.,50.328,6.942,15,m:e22agmJ

    1. This site i used but in 1-2 days the situation changed a lot!

  7. The more variation the better, it will be interesting to see how the tyres will handle it, and how the drivers will handle the tyres. I hope it could move around things a little bit (except for the top, merc always knows how to adapt)

  8. F1 manages to get dry races on tracks and places where it is usually soaked this time of year. The 24h on the Nordschleife was even paused due to the dreadful weather a few weeks ago.

    1. Missed that race this time. Any idea who won?

  9. Extremely brave to give a weather forecast for the Eifel three days ahead of the event, three hours ahead would be chancy.

    1. @w-k
      My thoughts exactly. The weather there is so unpredictable, no chance to get it right a couple of days before.
      Just look at the race in 2007: an hour before the start it looked like a dry race, then by lap two or three, cars were aquaplaning off the circuit

  10. Thanks to coronavirus, the F1 fraternity won’t be experiencing the hot tropical weather (nearly the same every time of the year, except if it rains) this year, like we are experiencing here in southern India.

    1. @pt Yes, because of the lack of Singapore GP, although F1 will still face warm weather in general, at least in the Arabian Gulf region at the end of the season if not also in Portimao, Imola, and Istanbul before.

      1. Yeah, possibly.

  11. Friday it should be rainy throughout. The other two days, mostly dry.
    The forecast changed every day in the last few days, but it is looking more settled now.

Comments are closed.