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2014 Hungarian Grand Prix – Practice Sessions

LIMITED DEGRADATION DESPITE HIGH TEMPERATURES
AND DEMANDING CORNERS

1.6 SECONDS BETWEEN THE TWO COMPOUNDS:
SEVERAL STRATEGY OPTIONS OPEN FOR THE RACE

LEWIS HAMILTON QUICKEST FOR MERCEDES IN BOTH SESSIONS
WITH MEDIUM AND SOFT TYRES

Conditions were dry and warm for both free practice sessions at the Hungaroring, with track temperature rising by 12 degrees centigrade between the morning and afternoon sessions. Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton was fastest in both sessions, using the P Zero White medium tyre to set his best time in the morning, and P Zero Yellow soft tyre in the afternoon.

The Hungaroring contains 14 demanding corners, where the cars rely on mechanical grip because of the low to medium speeds. Despite these demands on the tyres, and a ‘dirty’ track that can cause the cars to slide and increase the workload on them, degradation proved to be low throughout both sessions.

With around 1.6 seconds between the two compounds, the Red Bull drivers were briefly able to topple Hamilton’s domination in FP2 by switching to the soft compound tyre earlier and moving to the top of the time sheets.

Two pit stops are expected for the race, but with such a significant time gap between the two compounds, the timing of the stops will be very important. Both Pirelli and all the teams will analyse the data obtained today, on different fuel loads, in order to get a more accurate read on the likely strategies for Sunday.

Paul Hembery: “We’re satisfied that the medium and soft tyres are working as we expected them to in Hungary, which is a circuit that can actually work the tyres quite hard despite the fact that it is low speed, especially if the set-up is not quite right. We’re seeing about 1.6 seconds between the two compounds at the moment, and this is likely not to change much, especially as the soft tyre in particular was showing low levels of thermal degradation. We think that this should be a two-stop race but we will have to analyse all the data fully before having a more concrete idea as to what the theoretical fastest strategy will be.”

FP1: FP2:
Hamilton 1m25.814s Medium New Hamilton 1m24.482s Soft New
Rosberg 1m25.997s Medium New Rosberg 1m24.720s Soft New
Raikkonen 1m26.421s Medium New Vettel 1m25.111s Soft New

Tyre statistics of the day:

Medium Soft Intermediate Wet
kms driven * 3,946 1,642 N/A N/A
sets used overall ** 66 22 N/A N/A
highest number of laps ** 26 24 N/A N/A

* The above number gives the total amount of kilometres driven in FP1 and FP2 today, all drivers combined.
** Per compound, all drivers combined.

Pirelli fact of the day:

The Hungaroring is truly a track of champions: since 1986, only four non World Champions have ever won the race. Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton are the most successful drivers at the Hungaroring with four wins apiece, while Jenson Button and Nigel Mansell are the only people to have ever won the race from outside the first two rows of the grid.