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2012 Chinese Grand Prix Build Up


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#1 puxanando

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 14:11

Rain in Shanghai?

So After catching The Flying Lap with Peter Windsor today, I get a call from a friend of mine in Shanghai. After chatting about the upcoming GP and the apparent lack of promotion of it, we spoke about, what else? The weather….

It just so happens that the long range forecast for Shanghai China for Friday April 13th (if anyone happens to be superstitious) to Sunday April 15th, which happen to coincide with the three days of the Chinese GP, calls for RAIN! Cooler than expected temperatures include; overnight temperatures Thursday around 5 degrees Celsius (that’s 41F) with the high on Sunday around 19 degrees Celsius (66.2F).

Might lightning strike twice for Ferrari and Alonso? Are we in for a Shanghai Surprise?


WEB


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#2 Antonov

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 14:22

as a Kimi fan I want a 'normal' weekend: 3 days of dry running.

#3 puxanando

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 14:56

Early FORECAST - China GP

I wish me dry weather on friday (for testing new parts....and rain on saturday & sunday! :cat:

#4 aray

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 14:59

as a Kimi fan I want a 'normal' weekend: 3 days of dry running.

kimi surely can drive in wet circuit too.... :smoking:

#5 Santosdf

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 16:20

What are the betting odds on Checo for the win in China? if the race is Wet and drying , who knows, he vas very close in those conditions las time.

#6 Dunder

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 16:29

What are the betting odds on Checo for the win in China? if the race is Wet and drying , who knows, he vas very close in those conditions las time.


60/1.


#7 Dunder

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 09:54

Thread for all your predictions, observations, weather forecast and all the usual nonsense :).

Posted Image

Tyres Allocated: Medium (white) and Soft (yellow)

Shanghai Jiading is not my favourite track (understatement) with the only thing giving it any real character at the very long "snail" turns (T1 and T13). With that said, I do like the wide T14 at the end of the straight which allows the attacking driver the option to give up the inside like in order to cut back and get on the power earlier on the run down to the final turn. The track lends itself to a strong front end and good traction.

The first two races have shown us that McLaren are the team to beat albeit, in race conditions, Red Bull are very close to them. Below those two teams it is still very hard to draw any firm conclusions with the first two races having been somewhat 'messy' and with Mercedes GP being so much less competitive than they have been during qualifying. In 2011 we saw some teams adopt 2-stop strategies but the 3-stopper proved to be superior and with this year's tyres being softer, I think that is likely to be the case again.

Many teams will introduce upgrades for this race albeit none of them are likely to be major.

No predictions from me but I am quietly confident that McLaren can make it 3 successive wins at this race.

Current weather forecast shows scattered showers throughout the weekend.

I am not a fan of DRS and hope that the FIA follow what they did last year where there was a single activation zone which was on the back straight around 700m from T14 (having been shortened during the weekend).

Edited by Dunder, 10 April 2012 - 10:09.


#8 jrg19

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:01

Lewis Hamilton is the only driver to win twice here obviously a track he loves, should be on for another podium.

Weather could play a big part too.

#9 Red17

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:06

Rooting for a Mark Webber return to form (again).

On a more serious note, I expect Maca to be in front with RB edging a bit. If the race goes chaotic I see Jenson getting the win, but if nothing serious happens Lewis should walk away with it. Ferrari slots to third and Mercedes continues to show excellent qualify pace but no race pace. No podium yet for Kimi.

Also hoping for something other than Riat's PR on the Caterham camp.

EDIT: All teams should be able to qualify

Edited by Red17, 10 April 2012 - 10:07.


#10 IceSkyrim

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:08

http://www.jamesalle...ese-grand-prix/

Track characteristics:

Shanghai International Circuit; 5.45 kilometres. Race distance: 56 laps = 305 kilometres, 16 corners in total, a mixture of slow, medium and fast

Aerodynamic setup – Medium/high downforce. Top speed 322km/h (with Drag Reduction System on rear wing) – 310km/h without.

Full throttle – 55% of the lap. Total fuel needed for race distance: 148 kilos.

Time spent braking: 14% of the lap. 8 braking zones. Brake wear: Medium.

Loss time for a Pit stop = 17.5 seconds
Total time needed for pit stop: 21 seconds.

Fuel effect (cost in lap time per 10kg of fuel carried): 0.34 seconds (average). Fuel consumption: 2.55 kg/lap

As far as drivers’ form is concerned at Shanghai, Lewis Hamilton is the only driver to have won the race twice, there are five other previous winners in the field; Michael Schumacher, Fernando Alonso, Kimi Raikkonen, Jenson Button, Sebastian Vettel.

It can often been overcast and cold in Shanghai and rain is quite common. The 2010 event was held in wet conditions, as was the 2009 edition. The race starts at 1500hrs local time. The ambient temperatures are forecast to be around 18-20 degrees, quite low by F1 standards.

Pirelli tyre choice for Shanghai: Soft and Medium.


#11 Cavani

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:13

oh how i missed the circus , expect rebull vs. mcalren vs. lotus vs. mercedes vs. ferrari fighting for podium finishes

#12 jamiegc

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:14

If you believe Dr Helmut, Red Bull are bringing no updates for this race, so should be as you were with regards grid positions.

As for the race, Red Bull have fantastic long run pace and hold their tyres brilliantly, but if they're stuck behind two Mercedes' their race is finished before its begun.

#13 Baddoer

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:20

So who else put money on Rosber pole? Because i didn't.

#14 Dunder

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:24

So who else put money on Rosber pole? Because i didn't.


Nico has had very good races here for the last two years but he has kinda duffed his Q3 runs so far this season.


#15 IceSkyrim

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:24

I would bet GrowJohn. :blush:

Lotus has top speed, good balance in curves and Romain is performing well.

How much is he paying :confused:

#16 robefc

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:29

Thread for all your predictions, observations, weather forecast and all the usual nonsense :).

Posted Image

Tyres Allocated: Medium (white) and Soft (yellow)

Shanghai Jiading is not my favourite track (understatement) with the only thing giving it any real character at the very long "snail" turns (T1 and T13). With that said, I do like the wide T14 at the end of the straight which allows the attacking driver the option to give up the inside like in order to cut back and get on the power earlier on the run down to the final turn. The track lends itself to a strong front end and good traction.

The first two races have shown us that McLaren are the team to beat albeit, in race conditions, Red Bull are very close to them. Below those two teams it is still very hard to draw any firm conclusions with the first two races having been somewhat 'messy' and with Mercedes GP being so much less competitive than they have been during qualifying. In 2011 we saw some teams adopt 2-stop strategies but the 3-stopper proved to be superior and with this year's tyres being softer, I think that is likely to be the case again.
Many teams will introduce upgrades for this race albeit none of them are likely to be major.

No predictions from me but I am quietly confident that McLaren can make it 3 successive wins at this race.

Current weather forecast shows scattered showers throughout the weekend.

I am not a fan of DRS and hope that the FIA follow what they did last year where there was a single activation zone which was on the back straight around 700m from T14 (having been shortened during the weekend).


Think anyone will gamble on a four stopper following Mark's performance last year? Quite like the idea of lewis getting pole and then ragging it! Also, Mark started on the prime last year and then had 3 sets of fresh options (can't remember whether hards/mediums etc), with the tyres closer together this year could someone qualify reasonably high up on prime and then go for 3 or 4 stop?

Edited by robefc, 10 April 2012 - 10:29.


#17 puxanando

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:30

Good breaks needed in Sepang! VIDEO

#18 scandyman

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:30

Nico has had very good races here for the last two years but he has kinda duffed his Q3 runs so far this season.

Nico said on finnish MTV3 that this track needs more from front end than rear end from the car, so does it work better for Mercedes then?

#19 Dunder

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:16

Think anyone will gamble on a four stopper following Mark's performance last year? Quite like the idea of lewis getting pole and then ragging it! Also, Mark started on the prime last year and then had 3 sets of fresh options (can't remember whether hards/mediums etc), with the tyres closer together this year could someone qualify reasonably high up on prime and then go for 3 or 4 stop?


I wouldn't have thought so. Webber did a 3-stopper last year and was flying in the second half of the race with, as you say, 3 fresh sets of options (softs). A lot of teams struggled to get the prime (hard) to work but nonetheless started the race with the intention of going for a 2-stopper.


Nico said on finnish MTV3 that this track needs more from front end than rear end from the car, so does it work better for Mercedes then?


On the face of it, yes. Mercedes and McLaren appear to have the most pointy cars if what we have seen in the first two weekends is representative. By the same token though, in Malaysia we saw both teams try to dial out that front-end bias in order to protect the rear tyres.

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#20 robefc

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:36

I wouldn't have thought so. Webber did a 3-stopper last year and was flying in the second half of the race with, as you say, 3 fresh sets of options (softs). A lot of teams struggled to get the prime (hard) to work but nonetheless started the race with the intention of going for a 2-stopper.


He did a 4 stopper didn't he?? But he could easily have won if he'd started higher up the grid, correct? I'm making that call based on how close he got to the front 2 despite starting so far down. And this year we have mediums rather than hards so the first stint would not be as much as an issue potentially.

In addition this years mediums are like last years softs and the softs erm softer than last years softs (!) so presumably more stops may be required relatively to last year anyway?

#21 Dunder

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 12:47

He did a 4 stopper didn't he?? But he could easily have won if he'd started higher up the grid, correct? I'm making that call based on how close he got to the front 2 despite starting so far down. And this year we have mediums rather than hards so the first stint would not be as much as an issue potentially.

In addition this years mediums are like last years softs and the softs erm softer than last years softs (!) so presumably more stops may be required relatively to last year anyway?


No, it was three stops. He used a set of hards for the first stint during which the car looked awful even before the tyres started to go off. Thereafter he only used the three sets of the new softs he saved from going out in Q1.

As you say, we don't have the two step difference in the tyres this year and the tyres used will be softer for this year's race but I just don't see 4 stops as being the way to go.


#22 robefc

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 13:28

No, it was three stops. He used a set of hards for the first stint during which the car looked awful even before the tyres started to go off. Thereafter he only used the three sets of the new softs he saved from going out in Q1.

As you say, we don't have the two step difference in the tyres this year and the tyres used will be softer for this year's race but I just don't see 4 stops as being the way to go.


Doh - I was about to point out that one set of primes and 3 sets of softs meant 4 stops...until I stopped and thought about it!

Please ignore my ramblings, 3 stops obviously the way to go.

#23 Mastah

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 13:55

I'm hoping for dry race, as I would like to see true pecking order on normal circuit. Top 3 should be reserved for McLaren, Red Bulls and Lotus drivers. I think Mercedes with their "superb" pairing will again struggle to score points, so it will be interesting to see who'll fight for the rest of points paying positions. And the question is - can Fernando and Checo make the difference again in China and outrace rivals in faster cars?



Good breaks needed in Sepang! VIDEO


Yes, Chinese GP is held on Sepang circuit Posted Image. Sometimes I wonder if you are AI or something.

#24 Risil

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 13:58

Haha, "snail turns". Can we campaign to have turns 1-3 and 11-13 renamed "Snail One" and "Snail Two" please?

Edited by Risil, 10 April 2012 - 15:47.


#25 robefc

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 14:09

I'm hoping for dry race, as I would like to see true pecking order on normal circuit. Top 3 should be reserved for McLaren, Red Bulls and Lotus drivers. I think Mercedes with their "superb" pairing will again struggle to score points, so it will be interesting to see who'll fight for the rest of points paying positions. And the question is - can Fernando and Checo make the difference again in China and outrace rivals in faster cars?


I think ferrari will be praying for damp conditions in china as their car clearly works well in those conditions. The key thing for Sauber is qualifying as the race pace seems good in all conditions.



#26 Seanspeed

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 14:13

Yes, Chinese GP is held on Sepang circuit Posted Image. Sometimes I wonder if you are AI or something.

We all have brain fades once in a while. :)

As for the track, I actually despise the 'snail turns'. The entry to Turn 1 is exciting, but then its just boring.

The middle sector is pretty nice, though.

Edited by Seanspeed, 10 April 2012 - 14:16.


#27 korzeniow

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 15:27

Thread for all your predictions, observations, weather forecast and all the usual nonsense :).

Posted Image


How come this track isn't regarded by many as aero demanding track?

Almost whole S2 consist from high speed corners (T7, T8, T9). There are also quick corners in S1 (T1 and T2) and in S3 (T12 and T13)

#28 ClockworkRacing

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 15:36

Lewis to get at least another podium

#29 SeanValen

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 15:47

How come this track isn't regarded by many as aero demanding track?

Almost whole S2 consist from high speed corners (T7, T8, T9). There are also quick corners in S1 (T1 and T2) and in S3 (T12 and T13)



Basicially smoother tarmac and yes there are quick corners but overall fewer higher speed corners with high lateral forces."
Sets ups can be geared more for the straights top speed and less focus on certain aero corners as well. Temperatures not really hot compared to other places, so alot of reasons why soft to medium tyres can be run as favored.

http://www.formula1b...preview-quotes/


Giampaolo Dall’Ara, Sauber head of track engineering
“The Shanghai International Circuit is a very demanding track. Its peculiarities are several sections with a combination of braking and lateral forces as well as traction and lateral forces. This puts some demands on the car with regards to braking stability and overall balance. The straights are also quite relevant for lap times, especially the very long one where you need speed in qualifying as well as for overtaking in the race. We are being allocated the soft and the medium tyre compounds. Normally the durability is not an issue but, as the track is not often used, there can be graining and high wear levels at the beginning of the weekend. We had some difficulties with tyre degradation in hot conditions in Malaysia, however, this should be less of an issue in Shanghai, because the tarmac is smooth and overall there are fewer high speed corners with high lateral forces


Edited by SeanValen, 10 April 2012 - 15:48.


#30 Dunder

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 16:01

How come this track isn't regarded by many as aero demanding track?

Almost whole S2 consist from high speed corners (T7, T8, T9). There are also quick corners in S1 (T1 and T2) and in S3 (T12 and T13)


T7, T8 and T13 (on exit) are the only real 'quick' corners. T1 is fast on entry but cars are not traction limited and braking for it is similar to how you would brake on a straight.

Edited by Dunder, 11 April 2012 - 01:37.


#31 Kelateboy

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 02:46

I'm hoping for dry race, as I would like to see true pecking order on normal circuit. Top 3 should be reserved for McLaren, Red Bulls and Lotus drivers. I think Mercedes with their "superb" pairing will again struggle to score points, so it will be interesting to see who'll fight for the rest of points paying positions. And the question is - can Fernando and Checo make the difference again in China and outrace rivals in faster cars?

Yes, Chinese GP is held on Sepang circuit Posted Image. Sometimes I wonder if you are AI or something.

It is easy to make that mistake since both of the circuits are called SIC - Shanghai/Sepang International Circuit. :)

#32 DrF

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 02:55

That massive straight should favour the Mercs, surely?

#33 sesku

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 03:56

Shanghai's turn 1 basically an overcooked version of Sepang's turn 1.

#34 ViMaMo

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 04:10

Lead Bull will be in trouble if Lotus and Merc get things right in qualy. They were just so close in Malaysia. Maybe damage limitation race for the Bulls until they find some pace in qualifying?

#35 Kelateboy

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 04:34

Lead Bull will be in trouble if Lotus and Merc get things right in qualy. They were just so close in Malaysia. Maybe damage limitation race for the Bulls until they find some pace in qualifying?

Damage limitation for RedBull in the next two races (if Bahrain takes place) because they will not be bringing any significant upgrades for the races. Just hoping that Vettel will not trail either Button or Hamilton by 30-40pts after 4 races.

#36 Kelateboy

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 04:36

That massive straight should favour the Mercs, surely?

Yes, if they have sorted out their tyre problems over the race distance.

#37 apoka

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 05:58

Yes, if they have sorted out their tyre problems over the race distance.

Maybe they should be prepared to take a more aggressive strategy for at least one of their drivers. It's just awful to see them being 2 seconds slower than the best cars on race day. Splitting strategies and giving one of the drivers one more pit stop could be worth a gamble.


#38 as65p

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 06:34

That massive straight should favour the Mercs, surely?


In qualifying. In the race, trick DRS will be of limited help. As Dunder pointed out in another thread, it must be even more difficult for MGP to get their gearings right, given that their speed differential with / without DRS is bigger than for other teams.

Overall, I reckon tyres must be a much greater concern. A bit more topspeed won't make up for the car chewing it's tyres, not by a long shot.

#39 PretentiousBread

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 06:55

In qualifying. In the race, trick DRS will be of limited help. As Dunder pointed out in another thread, it must be even more difficult for MGP to get their gearings right, given that their speed differential with / without DRS is bigger than for other teams.

Overall, I reckon tyres must be a much greater concern. A bit more topspeed won't make up for the car chewing it's tyres, not by a long shot.


An interesting thing Brawn said about the Merc was that Rosberg came into the pits in Malaysia saying his tyres were finished, yet when they inspected them they found them to be in fine condition. He said that the car seems to just switch its tyres on/off and that it lurches between these two states, and Rosberg mistakenly thought his loss of grip was down to the rubber being finished. So in other words, they might have sorted out their tyre wear issue, but it's now down to how they 'use' the tyre that they're still trying to figure out. It shouldn't be a surprise, this car is the great grandson of the BGP001 which was very sensitive with its tyres. These traits often remain with teams for many years despite the different cars.

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#40 Jamiednm

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 07:18


Ughh, rain forecast for Saturday and Sunday.

#41 as65p

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 07:27

An interesting thing Brawn said about the Merc was that Rosberg came into the pits in Malaysia saying his tyres were finished, yet when they inspected them they found them to be in fine condition. He said that the car seems to just switch its tyres on/off and that it lurches between these two states, and Rosberg mistakenly thought his loss of grip was down to the rubber being finished. So in other words, they might have sorted out their tyre wear issue, but it's now down to how they 'use' the tyre that they're still trying to figure out. It shouldn't be a surprise, this car is the great grandson of the BGP001 which was very sensitive with its tyres. These traits often remain with teams for many years despite the different cars.


That's indeed an interesting but also quite puzzling story. But then again I think the track conditions in Malaysia were pretty unique, I don't think too much can be drawn from that race.

#42 jamiegc

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 07:27

Ughh, rain forecast for Saturday and Sunday.


Everywhere I've looked says high chance of rain on friday, clear saturday, outside chance of showers on sunday but more likely to be in the evening.

#43 Iseriouslyhadenough

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 08:26

After chatting about the upcoming GP and the apparent lack of promotion of it


I think that's not entirely true. There is quite a lot of promotion for the GP, probably as much as for other races, but being Shanghai, it's just lost within the millions of other advertisements. At Shanghai Pudong airport, there are plenty of advertisements for the GP. There is advertisement to catch the metro to the race. But we all know that F1 in China is only one of several events, not THE event, like for many other countries. And it's not even a big catch economically-wise. Expected fee for the Shanghai GP is about 30 million $ (they got a discount for renewal apparently, first one to be able to sign such a deal with Bernie, who is usually charging 10% more per year - Chinese economy is expected to grow by about 500 billions a year, or about 1.5 billions (!) every day... that's about the whole budget of all F1 teams together it GROWS alone, every single day.. F1 therefore really is just a very, very tiny little thing for them, and can be happy to even get noticed. The sport really is taking itself WAY too important, when they think they can jump into another country and be the big guns there. China doesn't need F1 as much as F1 does need China, it appears to me. Or do you really think otherwise Bernie would have given them such a sweet deal for renewal? F1's impact on small countries like Singapore, Bahrain etc. might be substancial, but on the scale of China, it's really nothing.

#44 robefc

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 11:08

That's indeed an interesting but also quite puzzling story. But then again I think the track conditions in Malaysia were pretty unique, I don't think too much can be drawn from that race.


I guess what can be drawn from it is that the tyres are very sensitive to a certain temperature window.

Button apparently was flying at one point in the race until he caught other cars at which point his tyre temps dropped out of the working range and the cars he caught started pulling away from him.

Whether that's going to be much more significant in damp and/or cool conditions I guess we don't know but we could have similar conditions again in china.



#45 Red17

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 11:10

Everywhere I've looked says high chance of rain on friday, clear saturday, outside chance of showers on sunday but more likely to be in the evening.

Should hardly make a difference then. Fridays are now mostly to basic running. Teams will probably want the rain for some extra damp testing.

#46 korzeniow

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 11:33

Should hardly make a difference then. Fridays are now mostly to basic running. Teams will probably want the rain for some extra damp testing.


It can't be. Most of the teams will bring bigger updates.

Edited by korzeniow, 11 April 2012 - 11:33.


#47 Red17

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 20:39

It can't be. Most of the teams will bring bigger updates.

And...? The more data the better. The rain in Malaysia obviously caught a few front runners empty handed.

#48 MGKrebs

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Posted 12 April 2012 - 00:46

That massive straight should favour the Mercs, surely?


As long as they are within 1 second of somebody in front of them.

Do we know where the DRS zone/s is/are yet?

#49 Markn93

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Posted 12 April 2012 - 00:48

As long as they are within 1 second of somebody in front of them.

Do we know where the DRS zone/s is/are yet?


Take a guess  ;)

#50 loki

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Posted 12 April 2012 - 03:26

Who do you reckon will get glassed this year?.....