2014 F1 cars vs. 2014 GP2 cars

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    I found some news articles about next year’s cars’ performances and the variation was from 2 to 5 seconds slower that this year’s cars. So I did some calculation and found out how fast the cars would be compared to the GP2 cars if they were 5 seconds slower than this year. Let’s take Catalynya as an example:

    The pole time set by Nico Rosberg was 1:20.718. If you add two seconds to that, the time would be 1:22.718 which is not so bad, but with 5 seconds slower, it would be 1:25.718 which is starting to sound very slow. However, if you take the slowest lap which was Charles Pic’s 1:25.070 and add 5 seconds to that, it would be 1:30.070 which is, in fact, significantly slower than Marcus Ericsson’s pole lap of 1:28.706 in GP2 and only around 0.7 seconds faster than the slowest time in GP2.

    So as you can see, it is possible that some of the 2014 cars could be even slower than the 2014 GP2 cars which basically are the same as in 2013. However, I don’t actually belive that the cars will be as much as 5 seconds slower than this year, 3 seems more likely but even then, the gap between the GP2 cars and the F1 backmarkers would bee far too little, which I think is a problem since F1 is supposed to be ”The Pinnacle of Motorsport” and with these new regulations it just isn’t.

    Here are the news articles:

    Iestyn Davies

    I’ll admit that given the pace of development in F1, I’m sure that the cars will already be 0.5 seconds faster in Barcelona than they will be in Australia after the pre-season tests (don’t teams now bring an upgrade from testing to the season opener?). Given such a new rule set, and comprehensive change, the improvements that are going to be found in 2014 are going to be massive – even if Red Bull are a second or two off the pace in Australia, you still couldn’t rule out Vettel to do a 2013 and suddenly be on pace (like Hulkenberg in the Sauber) from some point onwards and still be in the title hunt (a la 2009 and the double diffuser, but to the extreme).

    I agree that 5 seconds sounds excessive, but with rule changes the losses are always less than is predicted. I remember the first one I saw back in 1998! And while Monza’s fastest lap may be from 2004 (last year of V10s and tyre pit stops), at some tracks the record is from 2013 or relatively recent! I’d be really surprised if the cars were more than 2 seconds slower to be honest. Although they could be relatively unreliable at first…

    @retardedf1sh PS. Check out the thread that your other thread on team mates and a revival of my own thread’s idea on future F1 predictions (5 years) inspired me to write!


    It’s only a problem if F1 & GP2 ever find themselves on the track at the same time, racing against each other…
    So what if the GP2s are as quick as the back of the F1 grid? They’re from a previous generation of regulations, and the teams’ set-up and tyre know-how has been refined over several years.
    And how slow was Rosberg during the race at Monaco?

    I’m sure the new F1 cars will develop quickly, lose any excess weight and develop more power that’s useable for longer. If there’s a pre-season test at Abu Dhabi, they’ll be massively quicker by the time they race there…and not just because it counts double!

    Iestyn Davies

    What it does show is how cost effective it actually is to design and race an F1 car, over having a spec series.

    Yearly team budgets:
    GP3 – £500k
    FR3.5 – £750k
    GP2 – £1.5m+
    F1 – £60m (Marussia or Caterham level)
    Top team – $250m! or over £100m more than Marussia/Caterham level! No wonder they are falling back all the time…

    After 4 years of existence, Marussia had a debt of £220m, which was subsequently written off by their new oligarch Russian owner Andrei Cheglakov just recently.

    Formula E is going to be run with a cost cap of what, a few million dollars? $5? or $1? I expect we’ll see a lot of ex-F1, GP2 drivers etc. that couldn’t get into an F1 seat or had not enough backing to stay (think Valsecchi, Leimer, Di Grassi, Di Resta, Chandhok for Mahindra Racing etc.). Recently, a lot of less monied guys did FR3.5 over GP2 (as it is more than double for GP2, nearing possibly £2m a season now per driver with lots of flyaways – hence Marko saying it costs a team 5m Euros to run a year in GP2! Yet his RB junior guys can both have a year in FR3.5 for less than a GP2 seat!

    Iestyn Davies

    It would also be interesting to predict how much faster they would be at the end of season double points race, than the pre-season test at the same venue. Up to 3 seconds? That is quite a lifetime in F1.. But it’s predicted the gains could be incredibly steep. Remember how bad some of the 2009 cars looked at the start? But Brawn went from easily clear at the front to midfield runners in almost one season…


    Since when did Brawn become midfield runners? A 1-2 in Monza, pole position at Brazil and a podium in Abu Dhabi at the end…I don’t think there was ever a point when both cars were in the midst of the midfield.


    I don’t think the cars will be that much slower over a single lap. Perhaps with the power train fully turned up, that part of the car might actually be more powerful than the current engines. I don’t know how much slower the new tyres will be (why can’t the fans have access to the tyre test that is going on now?!), but I hope that Pirelli still manage to produce some quick tyres.

    The race might be a different matter, if drivers are in constant fuel save mode; I hope it won’t be too bad. Of course, already over the last couple of years the pace of backmarker F1 cars on full tanks and old tyres was pretty terrible already, so in that regard 2014 might not be anything new. Just take a look at the lap times of this year’s spanish GP: https://www.racefans.net/2013/05/12/2013-spanish-grand-prix-lap-times-fastest-laps/. At the end of his first stint, Chilton was lapping firmly in the 1m35s.


    @Iestyn davies –

    And while Monza’s fastest lap may be from 2004 (last year of V10s and tyre pit stops), at some tracks the record is from 2013 or relatively recent!

    Pretty much all of the lap records for tracks still in the same configuration were set in 2004. The tracks that are still on the calendar that have more recent fastest laps are due to configuration changes where the previous lap record doesn’t apply, not improvements in car pace.


    I think the problem is fans think F1 has to be the out and out fastest discipline.
    Firstly, the development rate in F1 is scary, so the cars will be faster than their GP2 counteparts in no time, don’t worry about that.
    Secondly, I’d rather watch Seb, Alonso, Kimi and Hamilton wrestle a car around corners, than watch them go super fast, but it look like their cars are on rails (hello EBD). That for me is the pinnacle of motorsports, drivers all struggling but still going pretty fast.


    F1 is not the pinnacle of motorsport – the rule changes reflect that fact.

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