Eifel GP: Pirelli Grand Prix Review

By Courtesy of Pirelli
October 12 2020

 Pirelli Eifel Grand Prix Review
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* Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton took his 91st career win to equal Michael Schumacherís record. Hamilton, locked in a close duel with Red Bullís Max Verstappen, stopped twice, going from P Zero Red soft tyres to P Zero Yellow medium, to soft tyres again for the final stint. Verstappen followed an identical strategy, stopping on the same laps as Hamilton.
* The strategy was influenced by a virtual safety car and then a safety car. At the virtual safety car, around quarter of the way into the race, a number of drivers made their first stops: including the top three finishers. When the safety car came out, several drivers made their second stops: again including the podium finishers. There was then effectively a 10-lap sprint race to the finish, with the frontrunners on soft tyres.
* Renaultís Daniel Ricciardo finished third, using a similar strategy to the top three. In doing so, he sealed Renaultís first podium since 2011.
* Just one driver stopped only once: Haasís Romain Grosjean, who moved from the medium to the P Zero White hard tyre on lap 28 and finished ninth from 16th on the grid.
* The highest climber was Racing Pointís Nico Hulkenberg, who started 20th after being drafted in for qualifying, and finished eighth: having followed the same tyre strategy as the top five (soft-medium-soft).
* Temperatures remained cold: just 11 degrees ambient at the end of the race, with 19 degrees of track temperature. This made keeping the tyres in the right temperature window particularly challenging: especially at the safety car re-start.

HARD C2: Only four drivers used the hard tyre during the race, with two of them finishing in the top 10. The two AlphaTauri drivers (Pierre Gasly and Daniil Kvyat) and Ferrariís Sebastian Vettel used the hard during the middle stint. This was something of a surprise as it had not been run extensively during the sole practice session, but indicated that the Teams were nonetheless familiar with its characteristics.
MEDIUM C3: Used for the bulk of the race and by only four drivers at the start: both AlphaTauri drivers, Ferrariís Sebastian Vettel, and Haas driver Romain Grosjean. This performed well during medium to long stints, despite the lack of pre-race data on long runs.
SOFT C4: Used by most drivers at the start, with some long stints at the beginning of the race on this compound from the Racing Point duo of Sergio Perez and Hulkenberg, as well as McLarenís Carlos Sainz: all of whom didnít stop under the first virtual safety car. Even with the cars on full fuel, the soft performed well and didnít display much degradation during the first stint after the start. Verstappen also set the fastest lap on this compound on the final lap..

ďongratulations to Lewis Hamilton for equalling Michael Schumacherís record of 91 wins, and also Kimi Raikkonen for racking up a new record of grand prix starts. This was an extremely unusual race with the cold weather and lack of running on Friday, All the preparation work was done in one session on Saturday, but although there was no information about tyre wear, it emerged that there was less graining than expected, which prompted some teams to think about stopping only once. In the end, we some saw some light graining on the soft compound, but this did not influence the race outcome. The race strategy was largely influenced by the two safety cars Ė virtual and real Ė which were perfectly timed for the frontrunners and gave us all an exciting finale.Ē 


Gasly 1m31.178s		Hamilton 1m30.109s	Verstappen 1m28.139s
Grosjean 1m31.562s	Verstappen 1m30.439s	Hamilton 1m28.145s
Kvyat 1m32.214s		Magnussen 1m30.456s	Ricciardo 1m29.584s

HARD C2			Grosjean		32
MEDIUM C3		Raikkonen		34
SOFT C4			Norris, Hulkenberg	29


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