The technical challenge of Silverstone
Generally, Silverstone is a very fast track. The fast, sweeping bends at the start of the lap require a lot of confidence from the drivers, so they tend to set-up their cars for Copse, Becketts and Stowe while doing the best they can through the slow complex of corners at the end of the lap.
As at any track, there is more lap time to be lost and found through the slow corners, so the engineers keep a close eye on Club, the Abbey chicane and the final complex, where traction is all-important. As a result of the slow-speed grip needed through these slower sections, the cars run slightly more downforce than at Magny Cours, the last race on the calendar, and that places an emphasis on aerodynamic efficiency.
There are several sections of the track where the absence of traction control this year will frustrate the drivers, particularly at the exit of Club where the cars accelerate from second gear through to fifth while under severe lateral load. This makes it one of the key corners, as are the two left-handers - Priory and Brooklands - entering the final complex.
The asphalt is quite smooth, except for a couple of bumpy sections midway through the lap. Notably, the braking point for Vale is very bumpy so a few cars may be swapping ends early in the weekend as drivers work out their braking points.
Full throttle: 62%
Brake wear: Light
Downforce level: High - 8/10
Tyre compounds: Medium / Hard
Tyre usage: Medium
Average speed: 230kph (143mph)