A good listener few words. This is the case of radio communication that had Lewis hamilton with his team in the final part of the first free practice session of the 2021 F1 British GP. The Briton hoped to be closer to Red bull this weekend compared to previous races thanks to the evolutions that Mercedes brought to Silverstone to fight the energy drinkers. But in Free Practice 1 this Friday, Hamilton froze. The Briton put on the soft rubber and, when asking about his difference with Verstappen, he couldn’t seem to understand. He was 0 ”780 from the best time of Max. If there were doubts as to whether Lewis had rolled with much more load, they seemed to clear with the reaction of the Briton. The only question remains as to whether it is the umpteenth ‘theater’ of Lewis and your team. But it doesn’t seem the case. And so, Verstappen and Red Bull They seem clear favorites to take the first position in the qualifying session that takes place today Friday at 7:00 p.m. Yes, the classification will be today, and this is the first time this weekend is an experimental test with a new weekend format.
Today’s qualifying will establish the starting order for the new ‘qualifying sprint race’ to be held on Saturday, which in turn will determine the order of the grid for Sunday’s final race. This then made the teams’ strategy in Free Practice 1 totally different from the first practice sessions of another Grand Prix. If FP1 is usually decaffeinated and unrepresentative, this time it was key. And the fact is that the teams only had this hour of free time to test their car configurations and two hours to choose their final set up. From there, it will be forbidden to change the car for the remainder of the weekend.
2021 F1 British GP FP1 times
So it was crucial to roll and roll, make lots of turns and especially prepare the car for race pace with the sprint race on Saturday and Sunday’s long race in mind. Thus, the differences in time between the cars could be seen by the load of used gasoline, some more unloaded thinking about today’s qualifying, others with a little more fuel to simulate the 17 laps of the qualifying round on Saturday, and others more loaded to simulate Sunday’s race. In short, crazy. And between that uncertainty and multiple programs, it seemed clear that everyone prioritized their race pace to the simulation of ‘qualy’ to a turn.
F1 calculation of the possible pace at one turn of each car:
Prediction of the pace at a turn made by F1 based on the data
Alonso, blindly with the soft to the classification
This is what all the teams focused on, and among them, it should be noted that there were riders who will go to qualifying on Friday without having tested the soft tire first. It is the case of Fernando Alonso, completely focused on racing and not on his speed at a turn, aware that there he has more to gain than what he can achieve in qualifying with his Alpine.
Norris scares Hamilton
For their part, there were many others who did put the soft rubber last. Did Verstappen, with the best time, also Hamilton who was third, but did not Norris, surprising in the second position beating a Lewis who rode better rubber. Hence the surprise of the 7-time champion against his compatriot, who wants to shine at home with his Mclaren.
Good start for Ferrari to a turn, but with a doubt
The two Ferraris also rode the soft, with good feeling at a turn. Leclerc was fourth and Sainz was sixth. The Ferrari seems to be going well in a turn, but the question is whether they have managed to minimize their big problem this season with the front wheels. In high-stress circuits for the above compounds, the Ferrari suffers a lot in degradation and rhythm in long run. This phenomenon could be repeated in Silverstone. At the moment, both Charles What Carlos they will try to minimize damage with another good ‘qualy’ today.
Carlos Sainz, at the 2021 F1 British GP