2012 Canadian Grand Prix
Ferrari were once again the fastest team in the pits but despite that they chose not to risk a second stop for Alonso. Did that cost them a win?
Canadian Grand Prix tyre strategies
The tyre strategies for each driver:
|Stint 1||Stint 2||Stint 3||Stint 4|
|Sebastian Vettel||Super soft (16)||Soft (47)||Super soft (7)|
|Lewis Hamilton||Super soft (17)||Soft (33)||Soft (20)|
|Fernando Alonso||Super soft (19)||Soft (51)|
|Mark Webber||Super soft (17)||Soft (35)||Soft (18)|
|Nico Rosberg||Super soft (19)||Soft (19)||Soft (32)|
|Felipe Massa||Super soft (12)||Soft (46)||Super soft (12)|
|Romain Grosjean||Super soft (21)||Soft (49)|
|Paul di Resta||Super soft (13)||Soft (31)||Soft (26)|
|Michael Schumacher||Super soft (13)||Soft (30)||Soft (0)|
|Jenson Button||Soft (15)||Super soft (18)||Super soft (19)||Soft (17)|
|Kamui Kobayashi||Super soft (24)||Soft (46)|
|Kimi Raikkonen||Soft (40)||Super soft (30)|
|Nico Hulkenberg||Soft (21)||Super soft (21)||Soft (28)|
|Daniel Ricciardo||Super soft (17)||Soft (41)||Super soft (12)|
|Sergio Perez||Soft (41)||Super soft (29)|
|Bruno Senna||Super soft (23)||Soft (46)|
|Heikki Kovalainen||Super soft (17)||Soft (25)||Soft (27)|
|Vitaly Petrov||Super soft (18)||Soft (25)||Soft (26)|
|Jean-Eric Vergne||Super soft (16)||Soft (27)||Soft (26)|
|Pedro de la Rosa||Soft (24)|
|Timo Glock||Super soft (24)||Soft (32)|
|Pastor Maldonado||Soft (29)||Super soft (41)|
|Charles Pic||Super soft (28)||Soft (39)|
|Narain Karthikeyan||Super soft (22)|
Lewis Hamilton’s slow pit stop on lap 50 appeared to hand the initiative to Fernando Alonso. But Ferrari kept him out – did they miss a chance to take a second pit stop and come out in front of Hamilton?
McLaren’s Sam Michael believed they had, saying after the race there was one lap when Ferrari could have pitted Alonso and taken the lead.
It wasn’t a clear-cut decision for Ferrari. Hamilton dropped 14.8s behind Alonso after he pitted. Earlier in the race when Vettel fell behind Hamilton in the pits he had dropped 15 seconds back, but there wasn’t much in it.
Alonso had been 2.6s behind Hamilton before the McLaren driver’s last pit stop. Given Ferrari’s faith in their car’s performance on a race stint, and the lack of certainty over whether Alonso would have come out in front had they pitted him, it’s not hard to see why they might have thought keeping him out in front was their best shot at beating the McLaren.
Canadian Grand Prix pit stop times
How long each driver’s pit stops took:
|Driver||Team||Pit stop time||Gap||On lap|
|5||Mark Webber||Red Bull||21.199||0.084||17|
|7||Mark Webber||Red Bull||21.254||0.139||52|
|13||Paul di Resta||Force India||21.489||0.374||13|
|15||Daniel Ricciardo||Toro Rosso||21.558||0.443||58|
|16||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull||21.639||0.524||16|
|17||Daniel Ricciardo||Toro Rosso||21.689||0.574||17|
|20||Paul di Resta||Force India||21.734||0.619||44|
|26||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso||22.278||1.163||16|
|27||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull||22.428||1.313||63|
|32||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso||23.163||2.048||43|
|34||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India||23.660||2.545||42|
|35||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India||24.583||3.468||21|
It’s doubtful Ferrari’s reluctance to pit Alonso was due to any concerns about their pit crew’s performance. They were the fastest team on pit lane for the fourth time in seven races this year.
Ferrari’s performance in the pits has been enviable and so it was again in Canada. The three pit stops their drivers made were the fastest three of the race.
In a remarkable display of speed and consistency, the three pit stops were within 18 thousandths of a second of each other. Deeply impressive.
2012 Canadian Grand Prix
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- Canadian GP gets another high rating
- Top ten pictures from the 2012 Canadian Grand Prix
- Vote for your Canadian GP driver of the weekend
- Third Canada win for Hamilton in 300th race for McLaren-Mercedes
Image © Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo