drunkf1fan wrote: ↑
Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:33 pm
Yes, but after he left the pit, Max still has almost a minute of the track left and Hamilton has almost the whole lap to catch up. What matters is the gap over the line the next time around.
The gap as they both cross the line the next lap around was 19.2 seconds. That's effectively the gap Max/RBR would be up against when pitting.
If we take the first pitstop the really useful times are the gap the lap before the pitstop and the gap the lap after. The gap across the line while someone is in the pit is already reduced due to pit lane entry, being slower and the stop. So take the first stops, on lap 24 Ham was 1.3 seconds behind and the lap after Max's stop he's 18.9 seconds behind Hamilton, so a roughly 20.2 second delta.
The gap when Ham stops, Max is 16.5 seconds behind the lap before, then 4.9 seconds ahead the lap after, so a little bigger delta. As Hamilton was half a second quicker through the pitlane on his second stop then most of the gap is probably the pitstop being worse or being more careful on entry/exit. Considering Hamilton's outlap was his fastest outlap of the race, the chance of Max making it out ahead of Hamilton was effectively non existent. Sure Ham could make a mistake anywhere but there's a far higher chance of a bad pitstop losing you half a second then Ham making a mistake on grippy tires and losing the probably 2 seconds required.
Realistically even at 20 seconds he probably loses out, but at 19.2 it's a near certainty it fails.
If RBR pitted first there was a slim chance they'd win, but honestly I couldn't see it. Hamilton is too fast, too good at keeping his tires in and he pitted 6 laps later. The real question is if Max pitted first and went for that strategy would Merc have matched the strategy, obviously they'd come out behind but they were before hand, they felt faster and would still feel they'd have better tires end of the stint if they waited a lap or two then pitted.
Honestly I think it was fairly inevitable with that speed on the hards that Ham gets Max if both stay out on the hards. It's vastly less likely Max catches and passes Hamilton if they try the 2 pit and I still think Ham is favoured if he pits a lap later than Max because he showed over the whole race he was faster.
I still think it's impossible to say which car was faster, Hamilton + the Merc was definitely faster, but would Hamilton + the RBR been faster, the same or slower than Max in the Merc, all complete guesswork. But Ham's relentless pace, easing into stints (most of the time), keeping his tires in and maintaining pace to the end are incredibly. Max is also exceptional at this, far beyond Ricciardo, bottas, Vettel. Think say Brazil last year where he's just blowing the Ferrari's, Bottas, Ricciardo away on pace yet pits later as well. Ham and Max are a league ahead of anyone else in the field, but without the same car very hard to know which is faster. I think it might be close enough that one might be faster at his best tracks while the other is faster at their best tracks. I also think that is part of where Hamilton's advantage was yesterday, he's just absolutely and truly ridiculous in Hungary. 2014 was insane, Rosberg being held up by vergne so pits, Ham blows him a way a couple laps later, then has great pace, Rosberg burns out his tires catching and can't pass with way fresher tires, ends up pitting, catches up again, even more completely massive tire difference, still can't make the pass.