2014 Austrian Grand Prix tyre strategies and pit stops

2014 Austrian Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Red Bull Ring, 2014As Lewis Hamilton began the final lap of the Austrian Grand Prix 1.1 seconds behind his race leading team mate he had good cause to regret the time he had lost in the pits.

During the race he lost 1.6s more in the pits than Rosberg did, according to the official timing data. Hamilton later admitted he was frustrated by the time lost.

It’s striking that although they have had the fastest car, Mercedes have not performed the fastest pit stop at any race so far this year. This may partly be by design, because the standard penalty for an unsafe this year is swingeing, as Sauber found out today.

But the service Hamilton has received from his pit crew has usually been good. In the seven races prior to this one, Hamilton enjoyed the quickest pit stop on four occasions.

Considering that in Australia he didn’t make it as far as the pit stops, and in Monaco he had to be stacked behind Rosberg on his sole visit to the pits, that’s actually a very good record.

Austrian Grand Prix tyre strategies

The tyre strategies for each driver:

Stint 1 Stint 2 Stint 3
Nico Rosberg Super soft (11) Soft (29) Soft (31)
Lewis Hamilton Super soft (13) Soft (26) Soft (32)
Valtteri Bottas Super soft (15) Soft (26) Soft (30)
Felipe Massa Super soft (14) Soft (29) Soft (28)
Fernando Alonso Super soft (14) Soft (33) Soft (24)
Sergio Perez Soft (29) Soft (26) Super soft (16)
Kevin Magnussen Super soft (10) Soft (30) Soft (31)
Daniel Ricciardo Super soft (10) Soft (33) Soft (28)
Nico Hulkenberg Super soft (9) Soft (30) Soft (32)
Kimi Raikkonen Super soft (15) Soft (29) Soft (27)
Jenson Button Soft (27) Soft (31) Super soft (13)
Pastor Maldonado Soft (26) Soft (30) Super soft (14)
Adrian Sutil Super soft (11) Soft (32) Soft (27)
Romain Grosjean Super soft (3) Soft (24) Soft (43)
Jules Bianchi Soft (40) Super soft (29)
Kamui Kobayashi Super soft (14) Soft (55)
Max Chilton Soft (37) Super soft (32)
Marcus Ericsson Soft (28) Super soft (15) Soft (26)
Esteban Gutierrez Super soft (12) Soft (33) Soft (24)
Jean-Eric Vergne Super soft (8) Soft (31) Soft (20)
Sebastian Vettel Super soft (20) Soft (8) Soft (6)
Daniil Kvyat Super soft (10) Soft (14)

Austrian Grand Prix pit stop times

How long each driver’s pit stops took:

Driver Team Pit stop time Gap On lap
1 Valtteri Bottas Williams 21.133 15
2 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 21.234 0.101 14
3 Jenson Button McLaren 21.242 0.109 58
4 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 21.276 0.143 47
5 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 21.381 0.248 20
6 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 21.398 0.265 43
7 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 21.467 0.334 10
8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 21.474 0.341 11
9 Jenson Button McLaren 21.505 0.372 27
10 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 21.618 0.485 44
11 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 21.664 0.531 40
12 Kevin Magnussen McLaren 21.670 0.537 10
13 Kevin Magnussen McLaren 21.882 0.749 40
14 Romain Grosjean Lotus 21.884 0.751 3
15 Felipe Massa Williams 21.896 0.763 14
16 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 21.906 0.773 10
17 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 21.914 0.781 15
18 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 21.920 0.787 9
19 Sergio Perez Force India 21.960 0.827 55
20 Felipe Massa Williams 22.096 0.963 43
21 Valtteri Bottas Williams 22.208 1.075 41
22 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 22.226 1.093 13
23 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 22.232 1.099 8
24 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 22.246 1.113 39
25 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 22.374 1.241 39
26 Adrian Sutil Sauber 22.449 1.316 43
27 Kamui Kobayashi Caterham 22.480 1.347 14
28 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber 22.530 1.397 45
29 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 22.555 1.422 39
30 Pastor Maldonado Lotus 22.612 1.479 56
31 Adrian Sutil Sauber 22.960 1.827 11
32 Max Chilton Marussia 22.977 1.844 37
33 Marcus Ericsson Caterham 23.177 2.044 28
34 Pastor Maldonado Lotus 23.343 2.210 26
35 Sergio Perez Force India 23.770 2.637 29
36 Romain Grosjean Lotus 24.212 3.079 27
37 Jules Bianchi Marussia 24.452 3.319 40
38 Marcus Ericsson Caterham 25.178 4.045 43
39 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 29.844 8.711 28
40 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber 55.222 34.089 12

2014 Austrian Grand Prix

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Image © Daimler/Hoch Zwei

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25 comments on 2014 Austrian Grand Prix tyre strategies and pit stops

  1. Leslie said on 22nd June 2014, 21:10

    Hamilton is always the one to lose out to Nico, especially adding more pit time so he doesn’t get too close to Nico..come on Mercedes the fans are smart!

  2. I find it insulting for the users of this site Keith has to spend time on this kind of articles to prove to the Hamilton fans that everything is just going about and nobody is being favoured. It’s not what they were screaming in Malaysia 2013 anyway.

    • Of course I’m talking about the Hamilton/pitstop saga part. Not the rest of the article.

      • D (@f190) said on 22nd June 2014, 21:48

        I find it insulting when people say “the Hamilton fans” and “they” rather than “some”. Not every fan thinks the same way. Infact I think its a very small number who believe Rosberg is being favored in any way. Especially here on F1F where fans have a good knowledge of F1.

    • Agreed, The other comment sections about this race were overflowing with disgruntled f1fanatics who said that Hamilton is being sabotaged by the pitcrew. Thank you Keith for pointing this out:

      But the service Hamilton has received from his pit crew has usually been good. In the seven races prior to this one, Hamilton enjoyed the quickest pit stop on four occasions.
      Considering that in Australia he didn’t make it as far as the pit stops, and in Monaco he had to be stacked behind Rosberg on his sole visit to the pits, that’s actually a very good record.

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 22nd June 2014, 21:59

      @xtwl I think most regular readers get there’s nothing sinister afoot, but of course I don’t just write for people who’ve visited the site before!

      • Adam Hardwick (@fluxsource) said on 22nd June 2014, 22:50

        “But the service Hamilton has received from his pit crew has usually been good. In the seven races prior to this one, Hamilton enjoyed the quickest pit stop on four occasions.”

        @keithcollantine While I don’t support the idea of any bias, a simple tally doesn’t tell the whole story – looking at the size of the difference and the effect it has on the race is surely more relevant.

    • lightsout (@lightsout) said on 22nd June 2014, 22:47

      As a Hamilton fan, I noticed it and complained it, but I don’t think it is deliberate. Of course if you look at the chart, both of Rosberg’s were faster so it has some truth.

      I just wanted some bad luck to happen to Roberg, and it doesn’t seem to happen. e.g. runs wides at a corner, isn’t passed by Bottas.

    • Guy (@sudd) said on 23rd June 2014, 5:58

      @PorscheF1, no one knows for a fact that the team is favoring one driver over another. What we do know is one driver on average gets slower pit stop service times that have a direct impact on the race outcome. When people bring up this discrepancy, don’t you think you’re the irrational one when you simply dismiss it as “conspiracy”? No one is saying flat out that Mercedes is cheating Hamilton. We are simply pointing out a difference in times that is becoming a pattern. Why do you have such a hard time acknowledging this and why are you SO certain there is no fowl play?

      BTW, the pit stop times posted by Keith are misleading. They only show pit entry to pit exit. They tell you nothing about the actual service time spent in the box.

  3. Peter said on 22nd June 2014, 22:06

    Mark Webber questioned Lewis about his “positioning” in the box on pit stops & David Hobbs on NBC also mentioned that this is what could be costing him the fractions but sometimes you do also notice a hesitation from Lewis after the tyres are on.

    • Michael (@freelittlebirds) said on 23rd June 2014, 20:38

      Actually, Steve Matchett mentioned the positioning – I don’t believe that Mark Webber was talking about his actual positioning in the box was he? At least I didn’t get that impression unless something else was so blatantly obvious that somehow we missed in the USA and Mark Webber was made aware of…

  4. Neil (@neilosjames) said on 23rd June 2014, 1:42

    Kobayashi… Soft (55).

    Must be up there with the longest-ever soft Pirelli tyre stints. Know of one longer on the medium, but my (admittedly extremely patchy) memory can’t think of a longer soft run.

  5. Guy (@sudd) said on 23rd June 2014, 6:00

    @KeithCollantine, your pit stop times are misleading. They simply show pit entry to pit exit time. They say absolutely nothing about the actual service time spent stationary in the box. Which is what the dispute is about.

    • GeeMac (@geemac) said on 23rd June 2014, 6:15

      Longer in the box = longer overall time in the pit lane.

      There is no dispute. Yes his pitstops were both longer than Rosberg’s but, on balance over the course of the season, he has been receiving the exact same treatment as Rosberg. Sometimes drivers are delayed by slow pitstops, it’s part of racing.

      • Guy (@sudd) said on 23rd June 2014, 6:38

        Wrong! There is time to be made and lost leaving the box. Think of it like a standing start launch to the GP. Only this time you’re doing it from the pit box. If you’re going to just look at the pit entry to pit exit time, understand you’re leaving out vital details.

        If you’ve been watching the entire season, you would know stationary service times have been slower for Hamilton at crucial moments. Has he gotten faster stops sometimes? Sure! But you won’t see evidence of the slow service times just by looking at total time spent in the pits.

        • @sudd, as a reply to both your comments let’s say I think it would rather be Hamilton his fault than the team its fault.

          Anyway, let’s assume Mercedes on purpose delay Hamilton his stops. How do you delay 0,9 of a second? Like physically. You’re ready to do something but then delay it by 0,9 of second?

          • Guy (@sudd) said on 23rd June 2014, 8:38

            @PorscheF1, I never said Mercedes did it on purpose or timed it perfectly by 0.9 seconds. My argument is Hamilton keeps getting costly pit stops and his side of the garage is not proactive when car problems occur. We don’t know the reason for it, but its been happening too many times. Whats so wrong about finding out the truth whether its the pit crew, Hamilton, or the team management? If this continues for another 5 races, our we suppose to just ignore it and say there is no problem?

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 23rd June 2014, 9:01

      @sudd No it isn’t. Here’s an example why.

      Imagine two team mates, X and Y, come into the pits. They both start braking for their pit boxes at the same point. Driver X stops exactly on his marks, his team perform a flawless pit stop with a low stationary time, and he goes on his way.

      Now consider what happens if Driver Y, having begun braking at the same point, brings his car to a stop more quickly. That means he’s spent less time driving in the pit lane. But it also means he stops slightly short of where he was supposed to. His pit crew have to compensate for that, edging their tyres and wheel guns to one side, which might cost a few tenths of a second.

      In that scenario Driver Y could spend less time driving in the pits but more time stationary, and vice-versa for Driver X. So of course the complete pit stop time matters.

      And of course it’s the complete pit stop time which gives us the best indication how a driver might have managed to get ahead of another via pit strategy, as it shows where they rejoined the circuit relative to their rivals. The stationary time only shows a small part of the picture.

      • Guy (@sudd) said on 23rd June 2014, 9:50

        @KeithCollantine, you’re assuming quite a lot. There are so many variables which we can’t measure. But what we can measure(the time the car stops in the box to the time its released) shows Hamilton has been slower. If you look at total time spent in the pit, you won’t be able to see it. But if you’re watching the race they differentiate total pit stop time and service time(in the box). The drivers can make or lose time entering the box or leaving the box. For example, too much wheel spin leaving the box or braking into the position. Those are variables we can’t measure separately from total pit stop time.

        Rosberg:
        21.474+21.664=43.138

        Hamilton:
        22.226+22.555=44.781

        44.781-43.138=1.643 seconds

        But we know Hamilton lost 1.9 seconds
        How do you explain that?

        • mourya said on 23rd June 2014, 10:17

          Yep he definitely covers up some of the stationary time loss by attacking the entry and exit points

        • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 23rd June 2014, 10:44

          @sudd I didn’t assume anything, I gave you an example to illustrate why fixating on the stationary time and ignoring the rest of the data is misleading.

          The drivers can make or lose time entering the box or leaving the box. For example, too much wheel spin leaving the box or braking into the position. Those are variables we can’t measure separately from total pit stop time.

          Yes you can, just subtract the stationary time from the complete time.

          • at least we all know that massa has consistently suffered from long service times not pit entry and exit. There is no excuse for Mercedes to always play innocent on Hamilton pit stops service time delays. 1.9 seconds will certainly bring you out ahead of your competitor. like we saw in Montreal when rosberg’s service time was long, ham passed him then the stupid DNF spolied the party, qn is why its always ham’s pits

  6. Michael (@freelittlebirds) said on 23rd June 2014, 20:40

    Massa’s strategy was just atrocious I really feel for the guy. He went from P1 to P4.

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