Tag Archives: Abu Dhabi

Formula One: McLaren’s learning sessions + Win Driver Helmets

Jenson Button on track.
Jenson Button on track.

As the challenging 2015 season draws to a close Mclaren took today’s free practice sessions in Abu Dhabi to focus on 2016 developments.

Today’s were a busy pair of practice sessions: not only did we refine MP4-30 for its last competitive outing on Sunday, but we also spent a considerable amount of time collecting and correlating data for use for our 2016 car.

Fernando’s car ran with a test rear suspension set-up for today, and he also ran an interim 2016-spec steering wheel. Both drivers conducted aero correlation work as we continue to improve our understanding of our car’s behaviour, with a view to optimising next year’s chassis.

Fernando Alonso:

FP1 1m45.865s (+2.111s) 20 laps 14th
FP2 1m42.955s (+0.972s) 31 laps 9th

“Many things could be behind this afternoon’s performance: first, I think we’ve made some improvements to the car – the team has kept pushing hard to bring performance. But, second, we probably ran the Supersoft tyre at the optimal point of the session, a little bit later than the others.

“I’m happy with the car, and our progress, but, unfortunately, I don’t think we’ll be ninth-fastest tomorrow.

“I tried the Supersoft on my long run – as we expected, there’s a bit of graining on that particular tyre, so the race will be tough, but it’ll be the same for everybody”

To close out the year Mobil 1’s Grid TV are giving away a scale replica of Fernando Alonso’s helmet to enter the competition follow the below link:

 

 

Jenson Button:

 “Our side of the garage was trying very different things from Fernando’s. Our programme was all about gaining an understanding for next year. I’ll be changing my car over to his settings tomorrow, which’ll make it a bit more enjoyable, but it’s all useful learning. “Fernando’s performance was very encouraging – we’re pretty happy with that – it’s very promising. I’ll be running that set-up on my car tomorrow, so we’ll see how it goes. “Our biggest issue on the Supersoft tyre is overheating in the final sector. That makes the car quite pointy, so it’s about looking after the rears while also pushing the fronts hard to make them work in the first sector. It’s a tricky balance and will make for an interesting race.”

 

Mobil 1’s Grid TV are giving away a  1:2 replica of Jenson Buttons’s helmet to enter the competition follow the below link:

 

 

Eric Boullier

This was a very busy day, as we had a number of important test items to evaluate during free practice. Happily, we made good progress, and we’ve got some very useful data to take home and study as we busy ourselves with preparations for next year’s car.

“Moreover, it was pleasing to see Fernando set a time on the Supersoft tyre that was within a second of the fastest time of the afternoon; to have achieved that, on a circuit that we did not expect to favour our package, was encouraging, and bodes well for the rest of the weekend.

“Jenson didn’t find a comfortable balance in either of today’s sessions, something which was probably exacerbated by the shift in conditions from day into night, which didn’t smooth his progress.

“Nevertheless, we have a good baseline to take forward into tomorrow, and we’ll make progress tonight – of that you can be certain.

Yasuhisa Arai

“Our first day of the last race in Abu Dhabi went smoothly. Both FP1 and FP2 sessions were completed according to the run-plans, and we were able to confirm the data-mapping on both power units.

“Fernando’s car had a high-voltage sensor go into fail mode at the very end of FP1, but a quick parts replacement was all that was necessary to prepare for FP2. He had a very good feel for the car during the evening session, and seemed satisfied with the overall set-up of the car and the power unit.

“Jenson ran smoothly during both sessions, but seemed to struggle to get the spot-on settings that he preferred. However, we gained an abundance of data from both drivers today, so it will be a busy night to analyse and further tweak the set-up tomorrow in preparation for qualifying and the race on Sunday.”

Formula One: Hype’d Force India Impress in Free Practice

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - Abu Dhabi Grand Prix - Practice Day - Abu Dhabi, UAE
Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM08 leaves the pits. Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Friday 27th November 2015. Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, UAE.
Sahara Force India delivered a strong performance in today’s two practice sessions in preparation for Sunday’s season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Sergio Perez              VJM08-02
FP1:     1:44.934            (P8)                  27 laps
FP2:     1:42.610            (P3)                  23 laps  
Sergio: “Today has been a good start to our race weekend, despite the brake issue we experienced in the evening session. The first session is not very representative of race conditions here, because the track temperatures are much higher than you would have in the evening, so we took the opportunity to try a few test parts that will help us in the development of next year’s car. FP2 was a very positive session: I felt comfortable in the car from the start and the changes we made worked well. Our long run programme was interrupted by the brake issue, but we have plenty of data from Nico’s runs that we can analyse tonight. The baseline set-up we worked on is already quite good, so we’re in good shape for tomorrow.”
Nico Hülkenberg       VJM08-03
FP1:     144.751             (P6)                   22 laps
FP2:     1:42.928            (P8)                  35 laps
 
Nico: “I’m feeling pretty happy with a successful day and lots of laps under our belt. In the morning we had a busy programme with several test items and future development work, which went to plan and gave us a lot of information. The afternoon was straightforward with no issues and our one-lap performance looks quite competitive. There is still room to improve with our long runs so we need to do our homework tonight and understand what we can change for tomorrow. Overall I’m feeling positive about our performance today.”
Otmar Szafnauer, Chief Operating Officer
“The car has been working well straight out of the box and both drivers were happy with the baseline balance, which allowed us to push ahead with an extensive test programme to gather data with a view to next year. The cooler temperatures in the second session were much more representative of what we expect for qualifying and the race, and both Nico and Sergio remained happy with the balance and the changes we made between the sessions. We look quite competitive, but the margins between all the teams are very small. Sergio lost some track time towards the end of the second session with a left rear brake issue, the cause of which we are still investigating. It means he missed out on doing a long run with the option tyre, but fortunately Nico completed a full programme so we have enough information to analyse this evening.”

Formula One: Pirelli- Smooth asphalt means low tyre wear and degradation

AbuDhabi

The 2015 championship concludes at a venue that is very familiar to Pirelli: the spectacular Yas Marina circuit at Abu Dhabi, which has been used for testing and a pre-season launch by the Italian firm, including the world’s first wet-weather test run at night. Due to the smooth asphalt, the two softest tyres in the range will be brought: soft and supersoft, as used at the slowest track on the calendar in Monaco (and at four more grands prix). The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is held from late afternoon into the evening. As a result, track temperatures tend to drop over the course of the race, meaning that the pattern of tyre behaviour is slightly different to normal: another complex variable for teams to factor into their strategy calculations.

Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director: “It’s incredible to think that the 2015 season is over already: it seems a lot less than a year since we were at Abu Dhabi for the final race of 2014. With the championships decided the teams can obviously push to the maximum and our tyre choice in Abu Dhabi provides them with an interesting challenge: while the surface is very smooth, the tyres are still pushed quite hard due to the track layout, so tyre management becomes an important part of the strategy, particularly under acceleration in the traction areas, where it is very easy to spin the wheels. This is the same nomination as last year, so we’d probably expect another two-stop race, but track temperatures can be quite variable as the sun goes down and this can clearly have an effect on the tyres and therefore strategy. Just two days after the chequered flag on the 2015 season, we already begin testing for 2016: there will be a dedicated Pirelli tyre test from 9am to 9pm on Tuesday 1 December, with all the teams running one car to test some 2016 constructions and the new ‘ultrasoft’ tyre, which will carry purple markings at next year’s races.”

The biggest challenges for the tyres:
The falling track and air temperatures over the course of the race (which does not start until 5pm) means that the track tends to get faster as the grand prix goes on, a phenomenon that is accentuated by falling fuel loads.

Just like the previous round at Interlagos, the track runs in an anti-clockwise direction at Abu Dhabi: a relatively unusual feature, which can sometimes cause physical problems for the drivers.

The first part of the circuit effectively consists of a series of non-stop bends, which heats up the tyre compound. The compound then gets a chance to cool down on the long straight, with the cars on full throttle for around 15 seconds, with the equivalent of around 800 kilograms of downforce.

Last year’s strategy and how the race was won: A two-stopper was the winning strategy for Lewis Hamilton last year. He started the 55-lap race on the supersoft, before changing to the soft on laps 10 and 31. Then 24 laps later, he became 2014 world champion!

Expected performance gap between the two compounds: 1.0-1.2 seconds per lap.

 

19-AbuDhabi-Preview-1k-EN

Formula One: Force India- 150 not out!

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - Brazilian Grand Prix - Race Day - Sao Paulo, Brazil
Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM08. Brazilian Grand Prix, Sunday 15th November 2015. Sao Paulo, Brazil.

 

Sahara Force India Preview the season closing race in Abu Dhabi and celebrate their 150th race in Formula One:

Team Principal, Dr Vijay Mallya, toasts the team’s most successful season ahead of the final race and a special milestone for the team.
 
VJM: “Heading to Abu Dhabi with fifth place in the championship already secured feels pretty good. It means we can approach the last weekend of the season free from pressure and with nothing to lose. Our focus is simply on enjoying the race and ending the season in style. Abu Dhabi will be a special race for us as it marks the 150th of our history as Force India, and we will aim to celebrate it with a strong performance on the track.
“All season I’ve been saying how proud I am of my team – particularly our development curve in the second half of the season. With 81 points from the last eight races we’ve enjoyed our best ever strike rate and we have been competitive at every race. With stable regulations for 2016, there is every reason to believe we can carry this form through the winter and into the new season. There is plenty to be excited about and a lot of positive energy in the team.
“This weekend’s race is simply another chance to demonstrate how far we have come. Our aim will be to qualify in the top ten and add a final helping of points to our tally.”
 
 
Sergio on Abu Dhabi
Sergio Perez savours his best ever season and looks ahead to the final race of the year.
 
Sergio: “The 2015 season has gone by so quickly, but I have lots of great memories and I’m very proud of what we have achieved. I think it’s probably been my best season in Formula One in terms of results and also the most enjoyable. We have grown a lot during the course of the year and we have had some special days, with a highlight being my podium in Russia and my home race in Mexico.
“I think Abu Dhabi is the perfect place to end the season, especially with a race under the lights. The whole venue is impressive and the track is quite a challenge from a set-up point of view. You need a car that works through the fast corners in the first sector, as well as through the slow final sector, which feels more like a twisty street circuit.
“I think we have the potential for a big result in Abu Dhabi. Things didn’t work out for me in Brazil so I’m determined to get back in the points this weekend and finish this great season on a positive note.”
 
Nico on Abu Dhabi
Nico Hülkenberg hopes to end the season with another strong performance in Abu Dhabi.
 
Nico: “The final race of the season is always important because you want to finish the season well and carry the momentum into the winter months. We have already secured fifth in the championship but I want to make sure I end the season in the top ten of the drivers’ championship so there is still a lot to play for.
“Abu Dhabi is a fun place for the season finale: the venue is great and the twilight racing helps create a special atmosphere. As a track, it’s not easy to get a good lap as the layout is very technical, especially in the final sector. It’s quite easy to come into a corner too hot and make a mistake, and finding a good flow is a big challenge.
“Brazil was a very enjoyable weekend for me: the car felt great and we maximised every session to come away with a well-deserved result. I think we can realistically aim for a similar performance this weekend. It’s been a great year for everyone in the team and we deserve to finish on a high.”

Formula One: Fans Pick Purple for Pirelli Ultrasofts

Pirelli

Following an agreement ratified by the FIA World Council, Pirelli will hold a tyre test in Abu Dhabi after the final grand prix of the 2015 season.

The one-day test will take place on Tuesday 1 December from 9am-9pm continuously, dedicated to slick tyre development.

Teams have been asked to run preferably race or reserve drivers, and they will not be allowed to try new parts nor alter the cars during the test.

All of the teams involve will field one car each, but participation is voluntary.

Pirelli will define the test programme for each car. The tyres used during this test will not be considered as part of the testing allocation for 2015.

The Italian tyre firm requested the Abu Dhabi session in order to develop a new construction for the 2016 slick tyres as well as test the new Ultrasoft compound, which will form part of the P Zero Formula One range next year.

The Ultrasoft will be distinguished by purple markings on the sidewall. This colour was chosen by fans who were asked to vote for either purple or silver via Pirelli’s social media channels. Purple was a resounding winner, capturing 85% of the votes.

Pirelli