2014 Australian GP tyre strategies and pit stops

2014 Australian Grand Prix

Jenson Button, McLaren, Albert Park, 2014Tyre strategy took a back seat in the first race of the season as engines and reliability became the centre of interest.

The new qualifying rules regarding tyres didn’t even have a significant bearing on the race, due to the rain which fell on Saturday.

Last year most drivers made three pits stops but Kimi Raikkonen claimed victory by only coming in twice. This time two-stop strategies were the norm as expected.

However most drivers made their stops early to coincide with the Safety Car. Jenson Button played a blinder at this point, reacting immediately to the first sight of the Safety Car board and getting in a lap before his rivals, making up some time.

He picked up more places at has last pit stop, coming in early to undercut Fernando Alonso and Nico Hulkenberg, He managed this despite Alonso enjoyed the second-fastest pit stop of the race at this point.

Ferrari set the two quickest pit stop times of the race, having a more successful day in the pits then they did on the track.

Adrian Sutil was the only driver who made a single stop as Sauber once again seem to have a car which treats its tyres more delicately than his rivals. It didn’t help him into the points, however.

Australian Grand Prix tyre strategies

The tyre strategies for each driver:

Stint 1 Stint 2 Stint 3 Stint 4
Nico Rosberg Soft (12) Soft (26) Medium (19)
Kevin Magnussen Soft (12) Soft (25) Medium (20)
Jenson Button Soft (11) Soft (21) Medium (25)
Fernando Alonso Soft (12) Soft (23) Medium (22)
Valtteri Bottas Soft (10) Soft (26) Medium (21)
Nico Hulkenberg Soft (12) Soft (21) Medium (24)
Kimi Raikkonen Soft (12) Soft (24) Medium (21)
Jean-Eric Vergne Soft (12) Soft (21) Medium (24)
Daniil Kvyat Soft (12) Medium (24) Soft (21)
Sergio Perez Soft (1) Medium (10) Soft (21) Soft (25)
Adrian Sutil Soft (35) Medium (21)
Esteban Gutierrez Medium (1) Soft (29) Soft (26)
Max Chilton Soft (24) Soft (17) Medium (14)
Jules Bianchi Soft (20) Soft (15) Medium (14)
Romain Grosjean Soft (28) Soft (15)
Pastor Maldonado Soft (29) Soft (0)
Marcus Ericsson Soft (23) Soft (4)
Sebastian Vettel Medium (3)
Lewis Hamilton Soft (1)
Felipe Massa Soft
Kamui Kobayashi Soft
Daniel Ricciardo Soft (12) Soft (24) Medium (21)

Australian Grand Prix pit stop times

How long each driver’s pit stops took:

Driver Team Pit stop time Gap On lap
1 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 21.825 36
2 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 21.978 0.153 35
3 Romain Grosjean Lotus 22.264 0.439 28
4 Kevin Magnussen McLaren 22.273 0.448 37
5 Jenson Button McLaren 22.399 0.574 32
6 Jenson Button McLaren 22.411 0.586 11
7 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 22.427 0.602 36
8 Sergio Perez Force India 22.497 0.672 11
9 Sergio Perez Force India 22.526 0.701 32
10 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 22.615 0.790 12
11 Jules Bianchi Marussia 22.656 0.831 35
12 Pastor Maldonado Lotus 22.847 1.022 29
13 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 22.887 1.062 12
14 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 22.933 1.108 33
15 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 22.978 1.153 33
16 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 22.994 1.169 12
17 Valtteri Bottas Williams 23.117 1.292 36
18 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 23.124 1.299 12
19 Kevin Magnussen McLaren 23.150 1.325 12
20 Marcus Ericsson Caterham 23.238 1.413 23
21 Max Chilton Marussia 23.493 1.668 41
22 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 23.673 1.848 38
23 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber 23.797 1.972 30
24 Jules Bianchi Marussia 23.821 1.996 20
25 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 23.920 2.095 36
26 Max Chilton Marussia 24.209 2.384 24
27 Adrian Sutil Sauber 24.305 2.480 35
28 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 24.331 2.506 12
29 Sergio Perez Force India 25.541 3.716 1
30 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 25.543 3.718 12
31 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 30.514 8.689 12
32 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber 32.657 10.832 1
33 Valtteri Bottas Williams 34.921 13.096 10

2014 Australian Grand Prix

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Image © McLaren/Hoch Zwei

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3 comments on 2014 Australian GP tyre strategies and pit stops

  1. TribalTalker (@tribaltalker) said on 16th March 2014, 18:51

    Wow! Hats off to Williams for replacing the broken wheel rim of Bottas in about 12 seconds!

    • Tomsk (@tomsk) said on 16th March 2014, 19:08

      Yes, and for keeping him ahead of Raikkonen at his second stop, despite Ferrari’s amazing work (2.2sec, according to the TV) and having to steer around the Toro Rosso crew on the way out.

  2. Theoddkiwi (@theoddkiwi) said on 17th March 2014, 4:56

    This is very promising for the season regarding the tyres. A two stop race is a good level. The softs had good life but also did show clear degradation without the random sudden cliff to fall off. This means the strategy is not so clear cut between the two tyre specs nor which laps to change them on. There was reasonable overlap available.
    They did have to manage their tyres, but not to the point of crawling around the circuit.
    I think the mix of fuel and tyres strategy is very promising

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