Petroltorque wrote:It's spiel because HRT are claiming that their pace is around 3% to 4% based solely on the Q1 qualifying times. It's the race pace that determines their true position and that's more like 6%. They are being shielded by STR in Q1 because the front runners don't need to run the option as they know Vergne or Ricciardo are guaranteed 18th spot.
Most of HRT's updates are around improvement in the cooling heat shielding of the car, ie reliability based. I'm assuming the front wing was the definitive front wing for the F112 rather than an update.
What they'd need to change to make an impact on Marussia ( who on raw pace are around 1s/ lap faster) would require such a major redesign of internal packaging and aero that they'd be best spending the budget on the 2013 car.
I just compared DLR against the race winners in Hungary, Germany, and Silverstone (sum of all laps both DLR and the winner ran, so I discounted the final laps for the winners since DLR didn't run as many laps and removing the first lap as they loose a lot of time there due to having a longer lap and more traffic) and in those races DLR was 4.9%, 4.6%, and 4.1% slower. And these races were safety car free.
It should also be taken into account that DLR looses a lot of time letting lapped drivers past. So comparing just the first stint, the difference is 4.7%, 4.1% and 3.4%.
So 3-5% slower is probably a good estimate of their pace compared to the winning car.