Indian Grand Prix: intelligentF1 Underlying Pace League Table

Posted on November 1, 2011

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The top cars were very closely matched at the new Buddh International Circuit. The suspicion is that Vettel had pace in hand, but unlike previous races there is no clear evidence of it at any stage in the race. In fact the only time he had an obvious pace advantage over Button was on the hard tyres at the end of the race. Quite a few cars did not use the hard tyres, so there are a number of bars missing on the chart. The underlying pace chart from the intelligentF1 model for the Indian Grand Prix, with Vettel’s pace on the soft tyre being the 100% reference, is (click on the graph to enlarge it):

Important notes are:

  • The top cars were very closely matched
  • Schumacher was not any faster than Rosberg – he got the faster tyres to last longer
  • Toro Rosso were clearly the fifth fastest car (on the soft tyre)
  • Williams and Force India were as fast as Toro Rosso on the hard tyre
  • The hard tyre was about 0.8s (just under 1%) slower than the soft tyre
  • The McLarens lost more time on the hard tyre relative to the other teams as in Korea
  • Hamilton was slower than the Mercedes on the hard tyre
  • Ferrari seem to have solved their hard tyre problems
  • Lotus were not as close as it appeared – the effect of new tyres on the first stint was quite big
  • Renault/Sauber/Force India were very close, Sutil’s good pace on the hard tyre (0.6s off soft tyre pace) just kept him ahead despite suffering degradation on the faster tyres
  • HRT were comfortably faster than Virgin
  • Karthikeyan was very close to Riccardo – much closer than Liuzzi has been recently
  • Trulli’s car was clearly damaged in the first lap crash
  • The slower cars seem to struggle on the hard tyres more
  • Renault were bad on the hard tyres in qualifying and avoided them in the race
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