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2019 Mexican Grand Prix build up Thread (Championship Decider Part Three?)


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#1 Marklar

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 22:39

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2019 Mexico Grand Prix
October 25-27


giphy.gif

For reasons unknown to me the Mexican Grand Prix is kicking off the transatlantic leg of the season and not Austin. Also it's the last Mexican Grand Prix too! Next year it will be replaced by...the Mexico City Grand Prix! Confusing? I know, but fear not. I'm sure Crofty will mention this often enough in the coverage  :smoking: 

myWrNKb.png
(How track limits will be policed)



The Mexican Grand Prix is the track with the by far the highest altitude (2240 m) on the calendar, the longest run to Turn 1 (900 m) and the biggest weekend on-track audience. The race with the highest ever race top speed recorded. Stage for the last two title deciders and Mercedes' weakest track in the Hybrid Era besides Malaysia. Even if the return of this track killed the legendary Peratalda the Mexican Grand Prix is in many ways special, although none of the races that were held since then really lived up to the expectations. And only 2016 with the controversies which were responsible for three different drivers getting 3rd seems like a memorable Grand Prix in recent times.



Biggest question for this weekend will be whether F1 journalists can copy & paste their race reports for the third year running should Verstappen win again while Hamilton clinches the title. One thing is for certain though: This time Hamilton can not win the title by walking to the finish line way off the podium, but more on that in the title permutations further below. I dare to say Ricciardo wont be on pole this time though...

 
 
Schedule

Daylight Savings are changing in Mexico on race day btw, this wont have any significant impact on Europeans since the same applies to them, but to all other places who either have no Daylight Savings or already had it earlier this month. This site has all session times correctly converted for each time zone.


FRIDAY - 25 OCTOBER     Local     UK       CEST/CET    AEDT (+1 day)
FP1                     10:00     16:00    17:00       02:00
FP2                     14:00     20:00    21:00       06:00

SATURDAY - 26 OCTOBER
FP3                     10:00     16:00    17:00       02:00
Quali                   13:00     19:00    20:00       05:00

SUNDAY - 27 OCTOBER
Race                    13:10     19:10    20:10       06:10

Tyres

C2 is one step harder than last years Hyper Soft, C3/C4 even two steps harder than last years Super Soft/Ultrasoft. Despite that the tyre choices are arguably more conservative than last year where relatively high tyre deg enabled a variety of strategies, with Verstappen winning on two stops (Ultrasofts-Ultrasofts-Supersofts). The midfield finished two laps down due to most of them opting for a one stopper with at parts excessive tyre saving....
EG6C_-wWsAACaFm.jpg

Not again....


Modest rain is forecasted for the entire week, the bigger fronts are expected to hit the track during the night, although that can still change. Everything else will probably just be isolated showers at best and are unlikely to greatly hinder the weekend, but might add another variable into the game, especially as the asphalt proved to be slippery in the past.

More importantly temperatures are expected to be moderate, with sunday being the warmest day, probably good news for Mercedes who struggled with cooling earlier this year on high altitude and temperatures during the Austrian Grand Prix.

The current estimations


FP1 - 15-16 C°, 25 %
FP2 - 19-20 C°, 60 %
FP3 - 14-15 C°, 5 %,
Qualifying - 18-19 C°, 30 %
Race - 21-22 C°, 50 %

The Favourites?

Red Bull and especially Verstappen dominated the last two editions, while Mercedes struggled massively last year, especially on race day with tyre management, which has now turn into their biggest strength though. With the moderate temperatures, the high downforce demands of the track and Red Bull's recent struggles Mercedes could be well within a shot for the victory here, providing the issues at the Austrian Grand Prix were not primarly down to the altitude.

Favourites however should be Ferrari. even if the altitude dimishes any power advantage over the ICE and the low drag package it still retains any advantage over battery deployment. If they dont lose too much in the final part of the track pole should be theirs. This of course can change on race day, but the thin air makes overtaking even mroe difficult than usual, despite the massive straights. However, if the variables fall into place it could be a solid three way fight.

More on the effects of altitude on the competitive order in this video



Elsewhere McLaren should lead once again the midfield. The Renault engine proved in the past to be more competitive in these conditions as well, so that could put the works team itself into a good position, although the track doesnt appear to suit their car all that well. Haas is expecting yet another write-off weekend, while Williams will probably use the event again to evaluate their 2020 parts.


Another Title in Mexico?

Lewis Hamilton had an interesting week away from the track, but this weekend he can make headlines with what he is good at. To win the title he needs to outscore Bottas by at least 14 points. So far this season he only managed this at the Hungarian Grand Prix, though Bottas achieved four times this season a result that would give Hamilton a chance to secure the title (i.e. finish off the podium). Bottas' Suzuka win most likely delayed the decision to the US or Brazilian Grand Prix, but it's certainly not impossible that the title will be decided for the third year in a row on this track.

JB6yPpg.png

Anything else?

Right, this years Dutch DJ to hijack the podium:

Spoiler


daniel-ricciardo-max-verstappen-red-bull


Edited by Marklar, 24 October 2019 - 19:53.


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#2 jonpollak

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 22:50

Is Potato attending?
As an observer of course....
Jp

#3 jonpollak

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 22:51

My spell check is amazing.
Jp

#4 paulb

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 01:17

Is Potato attending?
As an observer of course....
Jp

Thats funny. Is it po-tay-to or po-tah-to?

#5 KevR

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 02:11

Had an opportunity to be at a race at this track in the stadium section. A fun fact is the track is in the middle of a noisy, bustling city and the vast majority of people living there have no idea that there is any race going on ;)

Something tells me there won't be another Red Bull domination this year, although they'll be in the mix. Mercedes solved some tyre issues and should be stronger than last year, which was a disaster for them.

#6 pingu666

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:10

Had an opportunity to be at a race at this track in the stadium section. A fun fact is the track is in the middle of a noisy, bustling city and the vast majority of people living there have no idea that there is any race going on ;)

Something tells me there won't be another Red Bull domination this year, although they'll be in the mix. Mercedes solved some tyre issues and should be stronger than last year, which was a disaster for them.

 

from memory the honda engine was pretty bad in the mclaren here, cant remmber how toro rosso did last year :x



#7 Claymore25

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 03:25

Ferrari should be a monster in sector 1. Sector 3 would be the key between Ferrari and Mercedes.



#8 AustinF1

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 04:12


For reasons unknown to me the Mexican Grand Prix is kicking off the transatlantic leg of the season and not Austin. 

It's because they always have the GP on the weekend before Dia de los Muertos, unless it's on a Sunday, in which case they have the GP on that day. Next year the order will revert back.



#9 statman

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 07:30

looking back, that 2016 edition was pretty funny.

 

Vettel: "he's backing me up into Rishardo"



#10 Peat

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 08:13

COME ON LEWIS. YOU CAN DO IT. YOU CAN OVERCOME THE ADVERSITY!



#11 P123

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:16

Ferrari would be a better target for a sarcastic gee up... 3 victories from 8 pole positions.

#12 PayasYouRace

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:30

Thats funny. Is it po-tay-to or po-tah-to?


Nobody has ever said “po-tah-to”.

#13 shure

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:49

I'd forgotten about the title tbh as in my mind it's already Hamilton's anyway - let's face it, it would take a miracle even greater than 2007's for him to lose this one - so there's little to get excited about on that score.  Looking forward to the race though as the altitude tends to put the cat among the pigeons and upset the order a bit.  I think Verstappen / RB might surprise people and be a front-runner again and I can't shake the feeling that Ferrari will bomb!  Hoping McLaren may cement their 4th place


Edited by shure, 21 October 2019 - 09:49.


#14 TomNokoe

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:49

Not a huge fan of the circuit but really looking forward to the competitive order being shaken up. Expecting another 2 stopper.



#15 WonderboyF1

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 09:58

I can’t help but feel on paper this should be a good track for racing, but like OP said it’s just never really produced a good race yet, would be interesting to see a race on this circuit without the high altitude in play...

#16 jannyg

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 10:57

Whoa build up threads on a Monday morning. Are you guys fighting to be the first one to get these out lol?

 

Anyways nice introduction, hopefully the race is a cracker!



#17 SonGoku

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:13

No championship celebration here, we probably have to survive a horrible race.

Then it's party time in Austin!

#18 SophieB

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:23

Whoa build up threads on a Monday morning. Are you guys fighting to be the first one to get these out lol?

 

Anyways nice introduction, hopefully the race is a cracker!

 

No need for fighting - we have a sign up sheet! 

https://forums.autos...-2#entry8926062

 

Anyway, nice one, Marklar.



#19 CSF

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:29

Verstappen will probably win again.

 

Also, will this be the year we get a big one on the run to t1? I hate that run so much.


Edited by CSF, 21 October 2019 - 11:29.


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#20 Thatfastguy

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:34

Verstappen will probably win again.

 

Also, will this be the year we get a big one on the run to t1? I hate that run so much.

 

Unless RB pull off some truly magic, he stands no chance. They have completely miffed it after the summer break. Not even the altitude is gonna save them this time. 



#21 F1Gui

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 11:57

I just watched the highlights of last years race. Ferrari were very quick on the straights, therefore most likely will totally obliterate everyone this year. They will probably gain about 1 second alone down that main straight. Unless it rains im guessing Ferrari, Mercedes, Redbull in formation both in quali and race.

Edited by F1Gui, 21 October 2019 - 11:58.


#22 Ali623

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 12:18

Interested to see how McLaren perform here, since this track should suit their car perfectly

#23 speedx

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 13:49

I think Renault should be pretty strong. There are straights and slow corners which suits them more than McLaren. Only the middle section is tricky for Renault.

Renault best of the rest this weekend.

#24 BuddyHolly

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 14:44

Verstappen will probably win again.

 

Also, will this be the year we get a big one on the run to t1? I hate that run so much.

tbh I'll take a Max win over a Merc any day.   I'm expecting the race to be a borefest but I live in hope that it may surprise me.



#25 alframsey

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 15:08

No fan of this circuit but bring it on. I cannot see Lewis winning the title here though. Merc vs Ferrari here with RBR being slightly more competitive.



#26 HeadFirst

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 15:34

Hoping for something completely different ... a Racing Point 1-2??? Maybe Renault will announce they have sold the team  ... to Alonso???  :clap:



#27 TomNokoe

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 15:42

Suzuka race was a massive anticlimax for me, and with the championship all but sorted, I'm struggling to find any enthusiasm and motivation for this weekend. I'm sure it'll pick up by Friday, but :|



#28 Hela

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 16:56

Suzuka race was a massive anticlimax for me, and with the championship all but sorted, I'm struggling to find any enthusiasm and motivation for this weekend. I'm sure it'll pick up by Friday, but :|

 

Oh come on, Bottas 3.01 can still do it, surely that's enough of a motivation 



#29 HeadFirst

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 17:15

Suzuka race was a massive anticlimax for me, and with the championship all but sorted, I'm struggling to find any enthusiasm and motivation for this weekend. I'm sure it'll pick up by Friday, but :|

 

I have been over both WCC and the WDC for a while now. Lewis is a deserving champion (as is Mercedes), and I'm fine with that. I still find each race interesting in it's own way, as the teams adapt to the various challenges presented by an F1 weekend. The midfield is especially interesting in this respect, but there has been some change in the dynamic at the top. I have also found the development of the rookie drivers an area to focus on this season.



#30 TomNokoe

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 18:57

I have been over both WCC and the WDC for a while now. Lewis is a deserving champion (as is Mercedes), and I'm fine with that. I still find each race interesting in it's own way, as the teams adapt to the various challenges presented by an F1 weekend. The midfield is especially interesting in this respect, but there has been some change in the dynamic at the top. I have also found the development of the rookie drivers an area to focus on this season.


Usually I'm the same, but Japan knocked me off stride. I don't particularly know why. It was inevitable that we were going to have a poor race at some point, but it just felt really bland. Can't put my finger on it.

#31 Heyli

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 19:39

Usually I'm the same, but Japan knocked me off stride. I don't particularly know why. It was inevitable that we were going to have a poor race at some point, but it just felt really bland. Can't put my finger on it.

I have the same the feeling. As excited as I was before the season began, it all seems lost somehow and I dont really expect anything from the weekend. 

 

Let´s hope we´ll be positively surprised.



#32 jjcale

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 19:53

looking back, that 2016 edition was pretty funny.

 

Vettel: "he's backing me up into Rishardo"

 

Isnt that the proper pronunciation of Ricciardo??



#33 HeadFirst

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 19:56

Usually I'm the same, but Japan knocked me off stride. I don't particularly know why. It was inevitable that we were going to have a poor race at some point, but it just felt really bland. Can't put my finger on it.

 

In that respect you are correct. After a streak of good races (and unexpected results) it was a letdown. Hopefully Mexico will compensate.



#34 Augurk

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 20:00

Didn't realise in Japan Mercedes took both WCC and WDC. Theoretically everyone is out of the running except Hamilton and Bottas.



#35 djparky

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 20:00

tbh I'll take a Max win over a Merc any day. I'm expecting the race to be a borefest but I live in hope that it may surprise me.


It has been crushingly dull every year, bar the Vettel rant over the radio, and I say this as a Verstappen fan.

It will be the same old story, Hamilton will moan alot, Wolff will say Mercedes are really going to struggle, Ferrari will be quick but somehow lose and Mercedes will win. There will be some " incident" that leads to another 50 page discussion thread on this forum, and Div 2 will be the usual distance behind

#36 eibyyz

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 20:02

 

Lewis Hamilton had an interesting week away from the track, 

 

What did I miss?  Aside from him being recruited into FE...



#37 Unicast

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 20:42

Didn't realise in Japan Mercedes took both WCC and WDC. Theoretically everyone is out of the running except Hamilton and Bottas.

 

Just a little adjustment and your statement makes sense now  :p  :p  :p



#38 Marklar

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 20:44

Didn't realise in Japan Mercedes took both WCC and WDC. Theoretically everyone is out of the running except Hamilton and Bottas.

 

Just a little adjustment and your statement makes sense now  :p  :p  :p

Not really. What you mean is practically/virtually, not theoretically


Edited by Marklar, 21 October 2019 - 20:46.


#39 Garndell

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 21:13

What did I miss?  Aside from him being recruited into FE...

 

Did you hear about the Lewis Hamilton & Valentino Rossi seat swap?

 

https://www.crash.ne...otogp-seat-swap



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#40 HeadFirst

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 21:50

Did you hear about the Lewis Hamilton & Valentino Rossi seat swap?

 

https://www.crash.ne...otogp-seat-swap

 

Wow! Love to see it. :clap:



#41 BuddyHolly

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Posted 21 October 2019 - 22:12

It has been crushingly dull every year, bar the Vettel rant over the radio, and I say this as a Verstappen fan.

It will be the same old story, Hamilton will moan alot, Wolff will say Mercedes are really going to struggle, Ferrari will be quick but somehow lose and Mercedes will win. There will be some " incident" that leads to another 50 page discussion thread on this forum, and Div 2 will be the usual distance behind

Very true!



#42 grunf77

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 08:27

Why is Mexico high downforce track with all the straits? Is it cos high altitude you can put more wing? 



#43 JeePee

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 08:43

Why is Mexico high downforce track with all the straits? Is it cos high altitude you can put more wing? 

Yes. The air is very thin, which means you have little drag and wings are not as effective. That's why they reach the highest top speeds of the season, even with a Monaco like downforce setup, and also why slipstream is not so effective in Mexico. The car in front also has to punch through little air.



#44 Marklar

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 12:59

Tobi Grüner
@tgruener
·
8 Min.
Looks like the FIA added a third DRS zone between T11 & T12 (before the stadium section) for the #MexicanGP. The other two DRS zones are on the main straight (T17-T1) & on the second straight (T3-T4).

#AMuS #F1

#45 TomNokoe

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 13:25

Miniscule DRS zone

#46 ANF

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 13:34

Pit stop time loss last year was 20.5–22.0 seconds.

#47 Retrofly

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 16:06

If the last sector wasn't so mickey mouse the track might be ok, just seem to remember people never being close enough on the last turn to make DRS work.



#48 jjcale

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 16:28

Genuinely open race .... Probably the last chance for Merc to get pole.



#49 Bleu

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 16:32

Even with long front straight Mexico City is one of the slowest circuits in the calendar. Here's all of them ranked by the (race) lap records.

 

Monza #

Silverstone
Spa
Red Bull Ring
Suzuka
Melbourne #
Paul Ricard
Hockenheim #
Interlagos *
Sochi
Montreal
Barcelona
Shanghai #
Sakhir #
Baku
Hungaroring
Austin *
Yas Marina #*
Mexico City *
Marina Bay
Monaco
 
Those marked with # have their lap records from the refuelling days while those with * have a race to go this year which might bump them up. But I think the end-season changes might be limited to Austin moving ahead of Hungaroring, four tenths improvement compared to last year would do that.


#50 AustinF1

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Posted 22 October 2019 - 18:18

^Sure, according to average speed maybe, but not according to top speed. Isn't Mexico the fastest?