2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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tranquility2k4
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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Phil wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:42 am
That's a good point. I am torn about what unfolded on lap 11. Hamilton dropped his lap times by nearly 2-3 seconds and started to pull away massively from Seb. At first, Seb was holding against it, but then the gap increased further to 3+. I am not sure if he was pacing himself or if his tires were really done for. Either way, Ferrari reacted (in my opinion a little too early) by bringing in Vettel and trying to force an undercut.

However, that undercut IMO was never going to work, because it was already clear that the harder tires were going to be difficult in get into the best temperature range. In other words, the undercut was going to be less effective.

There is a point though that Mercedes somehow aced the performance on the HS. They have put a lot of effort into not overheating their rear-tires. I think part of that is because Hamilton was nursing his tires to that extend in the opening of the stint, that he still had plenty of performance left on them after lap 11. Perhaps the Ferrari needed more energy in their tires. This could be seen during Q3 on their respective outlaps: The Ferrari's were driving a lot faster in their tire preparation on the outlap while the Mercedes both were extremely slow. Maybe by running at the front, Mercedes/Hamilton could optimally drive their own pace suited to their tires than Ferrari could behind.

I think we continue from Singapore on, probably knowing that Ferrari still have some kind of power advantage (acceleration wise), but Mercedes have definitely found something in regards to traction and tire wear...
Good point - I wondered about this too. I was really surprised by how easily Lewis pulled away. Maybe Ferrari did have an issue with the HS tyres because Vettel did try to qualify on US after all. Even though they may have thought they'd be on pole, if they went through the HS very quickly from pole they would have been vulnerable at the pits. Maybe Merc knew this and therefore they executed their strategy knowing that even going at a slow pace, Vettel would still have gone through his HS tyres more than Lewis.

I certainly agree with the points people are making about Ferrari under performing in Q3 - there's no doubt they should have been closer to Merc and that Lewis put in a great lap, but I'm not sure they had that time in the car. Also I guess the main point is even if they were a match for that time, I think they were gaining a lot in sector 1, at least in practice 3 and therefore I still think that Merc had them in sector 2 and 3 - this for me is the big story and is completely opposite to the past when Merc had a big engine advantage and even with their poor slow speed corner performance could put in a competitive lap. There's no way Ferrari are poor in slow speed corners, but the car just didn't look hooked up round the track at any point for me, not to the level of Merc or RB when they put in certain laps during the weekend which raised an eyebrow so to speak. I just think it's not as dramatic as some people are making out with Ferrari having 'thrown it away' - maybe they could have got pole and the win but it was incredibly close and therefore Merc have improved massively in comparison to last year. Throughout last year Ferrari tended to be better in the corners on most tracks and Merc better on the straights. Everything you tend to hear from Merc is the opposite this year. Even in the first few races if you remember Merc were surprised by Ferrari's power, .e.g at Baku and China and there was all that investigation and electrics and oil systems, etc. Ferrari have had the better power unit package as a whole all year (although Merc look to have made up a lot of ground recently, and it seems track characteristics play a part in how much better Ferrari's PU us compared to Merc's).

Just some figures to back up a couple of points I made. In qualifying both Seb and Kimi had very similar sector times. Ferrari lost 0.4 in sector 2 and 0.3 in sector 3. In sector 1 they gained a tenth over Lewis but much more over others (possibly Lewis just hooked up a great sector 1, minimising their deficiencies there).

In terms of the speed traps in qualifying - Ferrari were top of all 4 measurements, +3kmh at speed trap, +4kmh at finish line, +4kmh at intermediate 1, +3kmh at intermediate 2.

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subcritical71
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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GrandAxe wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 2:56 pm
My prediction for Vettel's end of race interview? "I'm not worried, there are still many races and points to go."
Close, “When asked if he felt he was starting to lose grip on the championship, Vettel replied: “Lewis said he didn’t expect to gain ten points and we didn’t expect to lose ten points. Having had the race that we had there is full justification for losing ten points and obviously we take it.

“There are still a lot of races to go and points to score. I never believed we have the faster car by a large margin like people said, but I know we have a very good car.”

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WaikeCU
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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Remember when we used to talk about certain fast flowing tracks where Merc has the upperhand. I think for this season Ferrari have truly worked on making the car work on those tracks. Merc were always solid on these tracks and were actually working on making the car work on those doozy tracks, with the focus on Singapore (latter stages of the season, key moment of the season). They have focussed on Singapore and have nailed it. Meanwhile Ferrari have been working on gaining on those Merc tracks and while doing so, kind of lost focus on making the car work brilliantly in Singapore.

Add to that, they haven't won the races where we expected them to win, because of (silly) errors. Merc and Hamilton have made the most of them when Ferrari and Vettel lost out.

Restomaniac
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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WaikeCU wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:47 pm
Remember when we used to talk about certain fast flowing tracks where Merc has the upperhand. I think for this season Ferrari have truly worked on making the car work on those tracks. Merc were always solid on these tracks and were actually working on making the car work on those doozy tracks, with the focus on Singapore (latter stages of the season, key moment of the season). They have focussed on Singapore and have nailed it. Meanwhile Ferrari have been working on gaining on those Merc tracks and while doing so, kind of lost focus on making the car work brilliantly in Singapore.

Add to that, they haven't won the races where we expected them to win, because of (silly) errors. Merc and Hamilton have made the most of them when Ferrari and Vettel lost out.
Yep it’s almost like they quietly have been working on a F1 W09 EQ Power+b specifically for here and nobody saw it coming.

tranquility2k4
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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Just seen something else interesting in my analysis of race laps regarding the respective pace of Vettel and Hamilton. Prior to the pit stops Vettel did a 46.1 and 45.3 whereas Hamilton one lap later did a 44.9 and 44.3. The 44.3 Hamilton did on lap 15 was faster than Seb's fastest lap for the entire race by 3 tenths. Pretty astonishing really. Also if you look at how Verstappen upped his pace prior to his first stop, he could still only do low 45s, in other words, Hamilton was in a league of his own. I do wonder if Merc have found something in races because obviously Hamilton was super competitive compared with Kimi in Monza. I guess we'll see at the next race.

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Vasconia
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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Phil wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:42 am
That's a good point. I am torn about what unfolded on lap 11. Hamilton dropped his lap times by nearly 2-3 seconds and started to pull away massively from Seb. At first, Seb was holding against it, but then the gap increased further to 3+. I am not sure if he was pacing himself or if his tires were really done for. Either way, Ferrari reacted (in my opinion a little too early) by bringing in Vettel and trying to force an undercut.

However, that undercut IMO was never going to work, because it was already clear that the harder tires were going to be difficult in get into the best temperature range. In other words, the undercut was going to be less effective.

There is a point though that Mercedes somehow aced the performance on the HS. They have put a lot of effort into not overheating their rear-tires. I think part of that is because Hamilton was nursing his tires to that extend in the opening of the stint, that he still had plenty of performance left on them after lap 11. Perhaps the Ferrari needed more energy in their tires. This could be seen during Q3 on their respective outlaps: The Ferrari's were driving a lot faster in their tire preparation on the outlap while the Mercedes both were extremely slow. Maybe by running at the front, Mercedes/Hamilton could optimally drive their own pace suited to their tires than Ferrari could behind.

I think we continue from Singapore on, probably knowing that Ferrari still have some kind of power advantage (acceleration wise), but Mercedes have definitely found something in regards to traction and tire wear...
It could be. It obviously helps to be in the front to manage the tyres properly. I think the undercut was a desperate move as they saw that Hamilton was increasing the gap, so they thought "its now or never". It was clear that it wasn´t working when Sebastian couldn´t go enough fast, especially if you take into account that those tyres needed to last until the end of the race.

I think Ferrari must work harder to solve those little problems with the tyres, I guess they were so happy with the power update so they tought it was enough, while Mercedes has worked very hard to improve certain aspects which have helped them in Singapur, but also in Italy.

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WaikeCU
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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tranquility2k4 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:55 pm
Just seen something else interesting in my analysis of race laps regarding the respective pace of Vettel and Hamilton. Prior to the pit stops Vettel did a 46.1 and 45.3 whereas Hamilton one lap later did a 44.9 and 44.3. The 44.3 Hamilton did on lap 15 was faster than Seb's fastest lap for the entire race by 3 tenths. Pretty astonishing really. Also if you look at how Verstappen upped his pace prior to his first stop, he could still only do low 45s, in other words, Hamilton was in a league of his own. I do wonder if Merc have found something in races because obviously Hamilton was super competitive compared with Kimi in Monza. I guess we'll see at the next race.
Like sandbagging prior the first pitwindow? If you look at Monza, the same happened as well: Kimi pitted first and then for the next 2-3 laps, Lewis was setting fastest laps all the while Kimi was on fresher rubber. Kind of looks like Merc and Lewis were preserving life of those tires and sort of gave Ferrari the illusion they were pushing like hell.

tranquility2k4
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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WaikeCU wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:44 pm
tranquility2k4 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:55 pm
Just seen something else interesting in my analysis of race laps regarding the respective pace of Vettel and Hamilton. Prior to the pit stops Vettel did a 46.1 and 45.3 whereas Hamilton one lap later did a 44.9 and 44.3. The 44.3 Hamilton did on lap 15 was faster than Seb's fastest lap for the entire race by 3 tenths. Pretty astonishing really. Also if you look at how Verstappen upped his pace prior to his first stop, he could still only do low 45s, in other words, Hamilton was in a league of his own. I do wonder if Merc have found something in races because obviously Hamilton was super competitive compared with Kimi in Monza. I guess we'll see at the next race.
Like sandbagging prior the first pitwindow? If you look at Monza, the same happened as well: Kimi pitted first and then for the next 2-3 laps, Lewis was setting fastest laps all the while Kimi was on fresher rubber. Kind of looks like Merc and Lewis were preserving life of those tires and sort of gave Ferrari the illusion they were pushing like hell.
yes true, but the point is that Ferrari couldn't seemingly match Merc's times, there was no reason for Seb to pit when the gap was around 3 seconds - if they had more pace, Seb would have unleashed it in those 2 laps prior to pitting and the best he could manage was a 45.3 whilst Lewis did a 44.9 on the same lap and then smashed that the lap after. I'm just personally surprised at the performance of Merc at Singapore in general. I think everyone is a bit shocked really and it must be very satisfying for their engineers.

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Juzh
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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:lol: :lol: :lol:

Image

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Phil
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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tranquility2k4 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:47 pm
yes true, but the point is that Ferrari couldn't seemingly match Merc's times, there was no reason for Seb to pit when the gap was around 3 seconds - if they had more pace, Seb would have unleashed it in those 2 laps prior to pitting and the best he could manage was a 45.3 whilst Lewis did a 44.9 on the same lap and then smashed that the lap after.
I think Seb didn't unleash everything he could have. I think Ferrari simply pulled the trigger and got him in once they saw they had cleared Grosjean. They only ones who had a clear plan were Mercedes/Hamilton. For him, the game plan was simple: Preserve the tires, drive to a very low delta to not open a gap too soon to get far enough to pit onto the Soft tire (crucial, because they wanted to make it on a one-stop). The soft-tire had one big disadvantage though; Supposedly, the outlap would be painful because it takes some time to get the most out of it. At the same time, you don't want to overdrive it to avoid what happened in Monza on Kimi's car. This set the game plan in stone; Drive to delta, then when nearing the pit window, extract everything from it and then go to the soft tire.

Ferrari's game plan was more complicated. Assuming similar tire wear (which I think was what everyone expected from FP2 analysis), they could either

a.) pit before for an undercut
b.) pit at the same time
c.) pit after for an overcut

Option a.) was rather simple and would only work if they would go for the ultra-soft tire. As explained above, I think the soft was too 'hard' of a tire to extract the performance needed to make an undercut work. Obviously b.) is a silly option, because you don't gain nor lose. Option c would have been probably better, assuming they had enough tire life to wait out for a safety car (essentially, what Kimi and Ricciardo did).

I think Ferrari simply reacted too early. Perhaps they thought that by pitting Vettel early for Ultras, they could jump Mercedes. But I think it was easily visible that Hamilton just had more than enough left in his tires to counter that from happening.
Not for nothing, Rosberg's Championship is the only thing that lends credibility to Hamilton's recent success. Otherwise, he'd just be the guy who's had the best car. — bhall II
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siskue2005
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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Juzh wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:59 pm
:lol: :lol: :lol:

https://i.imgur.com/us1iLUu.jpg
it is the other way round
Vettel wanted to use Ultras in q2...but the team blocked it

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Juzh
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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siskue2005 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 2:17 pm
Juzh wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:59 pm
:lol: :lol: :lol:

https://i.imgur.com/us1iLUu.jpg
it is the other way round
Vettel wanted to use Ultras in q2...but the team blocked it
I'm pretty sure it's meant for the race, not qualifying.

bonjon1979
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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Vasconia wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:16 pm
Phil wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:42 am
That's a good point. I am torn about what unfolded on lap 11. Hamilton dropped his lap times by nearly 2-3 seconds and started to pull away massively from Seb. At first, Seb was holding against it, but then the gap increased further to 3+. I am not sure if he was pacing himself or if his tires were really done for. Either way, Ferrari reacted (in my opinion a little too early) by bringing in Vettel and trying to force an undercut.

However, that undercut IMO was never going to work, because it was already clear that the harder tires were going to be difficult in get into the best temperature range. In other words, the undercut was going to be less effective.

There is a point though that Mercedes somehow aced the performance on the HS. They have put a lot of effort into not overheating their rear-tires. I think part of that is because Hamilton was nursing his tires to that extend in the opening of the stint, that he still had plenty of performance left on them after lap 11. Perhaps the Ferrari needed more energy in their tires. This could be seen during Q3 on their respective outlaps: The Ferrari's were driving a lot faster in their tire preparation on the outlap while the Mercedes both were extremely slow. Maybe by running at the front, Mercedes/Hamilton could optimally drive their own pace suited to their tires than Ferrari could behind.

I think we continue from Singapore on, probably knowing that Ferrari still have some kind of power advantage (acceleration wise), but Mercedes have definitely found something in regards to traction and tire wear...
It could be. It obviously helps to be in the front to manage the tyres properly. I think the undercut was a desperate move as they saw that Hamilton was increasing the gap, so they thought "its now or never". It was clear that it wasn´t working when Sebastian couldn´t go enough fast, especially if you take into account that those tyres needed to last until the end of the race.

I think Ferrari must work harder to solve those little problems with the tyres, I guess they were so happy with the power update so they tought it was enough, while Mercedes has worked very hard to improve certain aspects which have helped them in Singapur, but also in Italy.
Seb was around a second to two seconds behind hamilton for all those initial laps of the GP. Don't underestimate how much more is taken out of the tyres sliding around in the wake of the car ahead. Hamilton was serenely pootling along in clean air while Seb had less downforce, struggling in the dirty air coming off the back of the merc.

Restomaniac
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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bonjon1979 wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 3:59 pm
Vasconia wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:16 pm
Phil wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:42 am
That's a good point. I am torn about what unfolded on lap 11. Hamilton dropped his lap times by nearly 2-3 seconds and started to pull away massively from Seb. At first, Seb was holding against it, but then the gap increased further to 3+. I am not sure if he was pacing himself or if his tires were really done for. Either way, Ferrari reacted (in my opinion a little too early) by bringing in Vettel and trying to force an undercut.

However, that undercut IMO was never going to work, because it was already clear that the harder tires were going to be difficult in get into the best temperature range. In other words, the undercut was going to be less effective.

There is a point though that Mercedes somehow aced the performance on the HS. They have put a lot of effort into not overheating their rear-tires. I think part of that is because Hamilton was nursing his tires to that extend in the opening of the stint, that he still had plenty of performance left on them after lap 11. Perhaps the Ferrari needed more energy in their tires. This could be seen during Q3 on their respective outlaps: The Ferrari's were driving a lot faster in their tire preparation on the outlap while the Mercedes both were extremely slow. Maybe by running at the front, Mercedes/Hamilton could optimally drive their own pace suited to their tires than Ferrari could behind.

I think we continue from Singapore on, probably knowing that Ferrari still have some kind of power advantage (acceleration wise), but Mercedes have definitely found something in regards to traction and tire wear...
It could be. It obviously helps to be in the front to manage the tyres properly. I think the undercut was a desperate move as they saw that Hamilton was increasing the gap, so they thought "its now or never". It was clear that it wasn´t working when Sebastian couldn´t go enough fast, especially if you take into account that those tyres needed to last until the end of the race.

I think Ferrari must work harder to solve those little problems with the tyres, I guess they were so happy with the power update so they tought it was enough, while Mercedes has worked very hard to improve certain aspects which have helped them in Singapur, but also in Italy.
Seb was around a second to two seconds behind hamilton for all those initial laps of the GP. Don't underestimate how much more is taken out of the tyres sliding around in the wake of the car ahead. Hamilton was serenely pootling along in clean air while Seb had less downforce, struggling in the dirty air coming off the back of the merc.
However let’s look back to Monza. Hamilton was in Raikkonen’s dirty air and was reporting no problems in fact he was happy to go on radio saying how good his tyres were. He then went far longer than Raikkonen on his starting tyres. Then look at Vettel’s and Raikkonen’s soft tyres. Vettels looked bad, Raikkonen’s looked damn right dangerous.
All the evidence points to Mercedes having got right on top of their tyre eating issues.
Last edited by Restomaniac on Tue Sep 18, 2018 4:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dans79
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Re: 2018 Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay, 14-16 September

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Restomaniac wrote:
Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:53 pm
Yep it’s almost like they quietly have been working on a F1 W09 EQ Power+b specifically for here and nobody saw it coming.
I think the big difference between Merc and Ferrari is the individual teams mentalities.

It's kind of like the Rocky movies. In almost all of them, the opponent reaches a point of frustration/exacerbation because rocky won't stay down. That's exactly what's happened several times this season. Ferrari deals Mercedes a body blow with a dominant performance (Bahrain, Canada, Silverstone, Spa), but Mercedes just won't stay down.

Ferrari is looking for that 1 knockout blow, and Mercedes is going to fight tooth and nail till the final bell.
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