Starting Fuel Loads

Discussion in 'F1' started by AlexO91, Mar 28, 2009.

  1. AlexO91

    AlexO91 F1 Rookie

    Sep 26, 2008
    NW England
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  3. Fast_ian

    Fast_ian Two Time F1 World Champ

    Sep 25, 2006
    Campbell, CA
    Full Name:
    Ian Anderson
    OK, good, I was about to start a "fuel load" thread - You beat me to it.

    Here's the official document from Jo Bauer (technical delegate):

    I think it raises some really interesting insights & Q's:

    1. Mclaren, BMW & Williams have huge disparity between their cars - A one stopper for one and two for the other guy?
    2. OTOH, it seems that they're burning around 1.5 - 2.0 KG pre lap - Phil's going to come in a lap ahead of Kimi for example.
    3. Kaz Nak has about 2 laps of fuel (!) - Maybe they're going to start him from the pit lane?

    I've got to say I was "nervous" about this getting published, but now I've seen it I think it's great that we have some insights as to strategy.

  4. HelloWorld

    HelloWorld Rookie

    Mar 3, 2009
    Palm Beach, FL
    Full Name:
    "Knowing this we can say that Jenson did a stunning job today in the final part of qualifying as the smaller amount of fuel he’s carrying will have given him less than a tenth of a second of lap time compared to Rubens and yet he is three-tenths faster."

    I'll just leave this here.

  5. AlexO91

    AlexO91 F1 Rookie

    Sep 26, 2008
    NW England
    Full Name:
  6. RP

    RP F1 World Champ

    Feb 9, 2005
    Bocahuahua, Florxico
    Full Name:
    Tone Def
    I don't like reading small print, so here is the fuel load article:

    After a dominant performance in qualifying in Melbourne, Brawn GP has been made to work a lot harder here in Sepang by the Toyota team – and I think Toyota can win this race tomorrow.

    It looks as though the Brawn is about 0.2s faster around here than the Toyota, but that’s close enough for Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock to put real pressure on Jenson Button, so he will have to keep the car on the limit, which could be interesting in this heat.

    Reliability is still not assured for Brawn. Look at Rubens Barrichello's gearbox change, for example – and they have not done much mileage in hot conditions, really only what they've done here this weekend.

    In contrast Toyota had the most reliable car in winter testing and they did a big mileage in the heat of the Bahrain test. So it's not going to be comfortable for Button tomorrow.

    Let's look at the fuel weights, just published by the FIA.

    What strikes me straight away is that Nico Rosberg, Trulli, Glock and Mark Webber are all carrying identical fuel loads. They should pit on lap 15 tomorrow.

    Looking at their qualifying performances then, we can make a direct comparison on pace.

    Trulli was half a second faster than Rosberg and Webber, whereas Glock was only a tenth ahead of them.

    This means that the Toyota, Williams and Red Bull are almost perfectly matched, but that Trulli did an exceptional job in qualifying.

    Button has four kilos more fuel than these four drivers and he will probably stop on lap 16.

    Again this shows that the Brawn has a small margin, but that Trulli excelled himself today.

    Robert Kubica lines up sixth tomorrow, with more fuel in his car than the other front-runners. He will go to lap 17.

    With only two laps more fuel in the car than Williams, Toyota and Red Bull and yet three-tenths slower, it's not a great picture for BMW.

    As predicted Sebastian Vettel has gone aggressive on fuel, in order to be able to attack in the race tomorrow from P13 on the grid (due to his 10-place penalty). He will stop on lap 11!

    To make that work he's going to have to be able to pass the KERS cars of McLaren, Fernando Alonso and Nick Heidfeld, which will not be easy.

    They are a lot heavier than him – 40 kilos in Hamilton’s case and more for Heidfeld, so he can do it if he’s really aggressive.

    I would say that should be the area to keep an eye on in the opening phase of tomorrow's grand prix.

    Meanwhile Ferrari had another bad day with Felipe Massa.

    At the end of last season they said that they needed to work on better reliability for 2009 as well as to make fewer mistakes as a team.

    Already in two races we have had mistakes on strategy and today on over-confidence, as well as poor reliability with both cars in Australia.

    No wonder team principal Stefano Domenicali says that this is falling way short of expectations.

    There is a long way to go in this championship and Kimi Raikkonen, Massa, Kubica and Hamilton, the four guys you'd expect tom fight for the title, are all level on points – zero!

    Meanwhile Button has a head start he can add to tomorrow.

    Keep an eye on BMW though. Their first go at a 2009 car is a bit half-cooked, but they have an updated chassis for Spain, which has been lightened to allow for the extra KERS weight with Robert Kubica driving. No doubt it will also have a trick diffuser.

    I can see Kubica having the mirror opposite season to the one he had last year, where he started strongly then drifted away.

    He will be a contender at the end, so these early races are all about keeping the scoreboard ticking over.
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  8. smart_alek

    smart_alek Formula Junior

    Jun 12, 2005
    Ontario, Canada
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    Is Sebastien allowed to alter his fuel load? I thought the car/drivers that didn't crack the top ten could pick how much fuel they wanted to start with. Maybe it doesn't count because Sebastien is taking a penalty.
  9. AlexO91

    AlexO91 F1 Rookie

    Sep 26, 2008
    NW England
    Full Name:
    The race has finished now but no Vettel wasn't allowed to alter his fuel load because he qualified in the top ten, THEN had to take a top place grid penalty. If he had purposely not got into the shoot out then he would be able to but then he would have had to start from last.
  10. AlexO91

    AlexO91 F1 Rookie

    Sep 26, 2008
    NW England
    Full Name:
    The fuel weights show that pole man Sebastian Vettel was 17 kilos lighter than the Brawn of Rubens Barrichello in qualifying, which is about six laps’ worth.

    Based on these figures I reckon Vettel will stop around lap 12 or 13, the classic first stint for a three-stopper, and he could well be looking at running the soft tyres in that short first stint to get the ‘misery phase’ of the way.

    The Red Bull is not able to match the way the Brawn looks after the soft tyre on a long run and this looks like Red Bull strategy guru Neil Martin giving his guys the best chance to challenge for the win.

    Barrichello looks a shade stronger than Jenson Button given that he is ahead despite carrying a little more fuel (2kg).

    These two will fight Vettel and Mark Webber for the win and I think the Brawns will come out on top.

    But they don't want to lose too much ground in the first stint and they are going to have to deal with Webber, who may play a role for his team-mate.

    What was interesting was the margin between Vettel and Button was the same in the low-fuel Q2 as it was with fuel in Q3 and yet the fuel Button had in Q3 was slowing him down by 0.4s!

    He may have been sandbagging a bit, carrying more than the minimum of fuel. And yet after the session he himself highlighted the relative Q2 performances.

    I think this can be partly explained by the Brawn still not being at its best in low-fuel single-lap running, whereas the Red Bull, a typical Adrian Newey car, is.

    The Brawn is happier when it has some fuel in it. Rubens was only 0.3s slower than Vettel but the extra fuel he was carrying slowed him by 0.6s, so the Brawn is still 0.3s faster.

    Also impressive was Toyota’s Jarno Trulli, who was 0.7s off Vettel, the exact amount his extra fuel is worth. He will need to make up places at the start if he is to use his strategy to challenge for the win.

    Fernando Alonso is very light but with the field spreading out in the first 10 laps, he’ll be hoping that when he pits early, he can take on a lot of fuel for the middle stint on hard tyres and convert his grid slot into a meaningful result.

    The Ferrari of Raikkonen and the McLaren of Hamilton both went heavy, some 30kg more than Vettel in Kimi’s case (11 laps’ worth) and 35kg in Lewis’s (13 laps).

    Fuel adjusted they are not terribly fast: Raikkonen is 1.9s off Vettel and the extra fuel is worth just over one second, while Hamilton is 2.4s adrift, 1.2s of which is accounted for by the extra fuel.

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