Tag Archive | German Grand Prix

German Grand Prix – FP3 results

Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 1 Vettel Red Bull Racing 1:29.517 19
2 9 Rosberg Mercedes 1:30.193 0.676 19
3 2 Webber Red Bull Racing 1:30.211 0.694 18
4 3 Alonso Ferrari 1:30.621 1.104 16
5 4 Massa Ferrari 1:30.639 1.122 17
6 7 Räikkönen Lotus 1:30.671 1.154 19
7 10 Hamilton Mercedes 1:30.744 1.227 20
8 8 Grosjean Lotus 1:30.781 1.264 18
9 11 Hulkenberg Sauber 1:30.966 1.449 20
10 15 Sutil Force India 1:31.009 1.492 18
11 5 Button McLaren 1:31.326 1.809 22
12 12 Gutierrez Sauber 1:31.405 1.888 20
13 14 Di Resta Force India 1:31.733 2.216 21
14 18 Vergne STR 1:31.855 2.338 18
15 6 Perez McLaren 1:31.855 2.338 23
16 19 Ricciardo STR 1:31.898 2.381 19
17 16 Maldonado Williams 1:31.969 2.452 20
18 17 Bottas Williams 1:32.036 2.519 23
19 20 Pic Caterham 1:33.230 3.713 19
20 22 Bianchi Marussia 1:33.470 3.953 22
21 21 van der Garde Caterham 1:33.964 4.447 21
22 23 Chilton Marussia 1:34.683 5.166 20

Fire in Williams pit garage

Pastor Maldonado in the Williams pit garage with Sir Frank Williams looking on (Glenn Dunbar/Williams F1)

Pastor Maldonado in the Williams pit garage with Sir Frank Williams looking on (Glenn Dunbar/Williams F1)

On Saturday morning, a few hours before the start of the third Free Practice session for the German Grand Prix, a small broke out in the Williams pit garage. It was apparently caused by a KERS failure.

The team was carrying out pit stop practice when the incident occurred. The Williams team, together with the teams who were close by and the circuit fire marshals, managed to contain the fire and smoke. There were no injuries.

The KERS unit has been removed from the car and contained in sand, which will dissipate the heat that the failure continues to generate.

Maldonado is in his car and ready to go out for the final practice session.

German Grand Prix – Friday review

2013-7-5_Hamilton Rosberg Germany Friday_L1

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg are likely to be in the fight for victory on Sunday (Daimler AG)

First and second practice for the 2013 German Grand Prix are over, and yielded few surprises. Red Bull and Mercedes are clear favourites for Saturday’s qualifying and Sunday’s race. Behind them are Lotus and Ferrari, neither team quite quick enough to make a strong challenge but strong enough to pick up the pieces if anything goes wrong with the leading two teams. And then there are the midfield teams – McLaren, Force India, Toro Rosso – who will compete for the final points positions. Last, the teams that have been struggling all season – Sauber, Williams, Caterham and Marussia.

The days leading up to the German Grand Prix weekend have been full of tyre talk. Pirelli have come under intense fire for the multiple tyre failures that occurred during last weekend’s British Grand Prix. The Grand Prix Drivers’ Association (that represents most, but not all, of the current F1 drivers) got together on Thursday and issued a statement to the effect that the drivers would withdraw from the German Grand Prix if it became apparent that similar tyre failures were present this weekend.

But, thankfully, tyre concerns seem unnecessary. Two 90-minute practice sessions on Friday proceeded without even a hint of a tyre problem. In fact, the opposite was true. The tyres lasted well, and produced consistent lap times over long runs. It looks like Pirelli have hit the nail on the head with the changes they made to the rear tyres leading up to this race.

Those changes concerned the material used for the belt that runs around the tyre under the tread. The 2013 Pirelli tyres were designed with a steel belt that made the surface of the tyres very stiff and flat. The idea behind the steel belt was to make sure that as much of the tyre surface as possible would be in contact with the track surface, which would make it easier to warm up the rear tyres.

But unfortunately, the tyre construction has proven to be problematic, with failures occurring at various races in the early part of the season. And so, after last weekend’s fiasco at the British Grand Prix, the steel belt has been ditched and replaced with a kevlar belt. And so far it seems to be working well.

Pirelli have brought their medium and soft compound tyres to the German Grand Prix. Friday practice showed that there is a difference in performance between the compounds of between eight tenths and a second per lap on low fuel. The soft tyre is, as expected, the quicker of the two compounds, but it is also wearing quite a bit faster than the medium compound. That could make for an interesting first half of the race, as there are likely to be markedly different tyre strategies through the field.

The top ten drivers on the grid are required to start the race on their qualifying tyres, which means they will almost certainly all be on the soft tyres while running heavy fuel tanks in the early part of the race. Those who qualify 11th to 22nd have a choice of tyres for the start of the race, which gives them the option of running the more durable medium tyres while their cars are heavy with fuel.

We could, therefore, see a situation where one of the midfield cars spends some time leading in the middle phase of the race. That would be the result of the front-runners pitting early when their soft tyres wear out, but the midfield runners still having life in their medium tyres. The order should even out by the end of the race, as the difference in performance between the front-runners and the midfield is large enough that tyre strategy will make very little difference to the outcome of the race.

Red Bull were on top in the second practice session of the day, but Mercedes are not far behind. The Silver Arrows drivers both complained of understeer after Friday practice, which is something the engineers will work to cure before third practice tomorrow morning. It does suggest that Mercedes have not yet shown their full pace, which is ominous for the rest of the field.

The broad conclusions that can be drawn from Friday practice are: 1. Red Bull and Mercedes are likely to fight for pole position and victory; and 2. Tyres are not likely to play a significant part in determining the outcome of the race.

German Grand Prix – FP2 results

Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 1 Vettel Red Bull 1:30.416 39
2 9 Rosberg Mercedes 1:30.651 0.235 38
3 2 Webber Red Bull 1:30.683 0.267 41
4 8 Grosjean Lotus 1:30.843 0.427 32
5 7 Raikkonen Lotus 1:30.848 0.432 27
6 3 Alonso Ferrari 1:31.056 0.640 39
7 4 Massa Ferrari 1:31.059 0.643 41
8 10 Hamilton Mercedes 1:31.304 0.888 35
9 5 Button McLaren 1:31.568 1.152 37
10 14 Di Resta Force India 1:31.797 1.381 40
11 15 Sutil Force India 1:31.824 1.408 34
12 19 Ricciardo Toro Rosso 1:31.855 1.439 42
13 18 Vergne Toro Rosso 1:32.055 1.639 39
14 6 Perez McLaren 1:32.086 1.670 36
15 11 Hulklenberg Sauber 1:32.495 2.079 39
16 12 Gutierrez Sauber 1:32.762 2.346 44
17 17 Bottas Williams 1:32.879 2.463 35
18 16 Maldonado Williams 1:32.880 2.464 36
19 20 Pic Caterham 1:33.695 3.279 38
20 21 Van der Garde Caterham 1:33.804 3.388 40
21 22 Bianchi Marussia 1:34.017 3.601 10
22 23 Chilton Marussia 1:34.667 4.251 39
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