Is P2 better than P1 at the start in Mexico? "It's all about top speed"

03-11-2021 18:49 | Updated: 03-11-2021 21:56
by GPblog.com
F1 News
Is P2 better than P1 at the start in Mexico? It's all about top speed

It is increasingly being questioned: the starting position in a Formula 1 race. At some tracks, it seems to be more beneficial to start from second than first because of track position and the run to the first corner. Marc Priestley, former engineer at McLaren, shines his light on the issue in a video on his YouTubechannel.

"You can't really say that because it's hindsight," Priestley began. "If you make a great start P1 is obviously the best. If you make a less than stellar start the person starting from P2 has a very long run on which he can ride in your slipstream until the first corner."

"It is therefore said, especially given the long run to Turn 1, that from second place you have an advantage or at least you are not at a disadvantage," the Brit continued. "From P1, first of all you have to make sure you get away great, and in addition to that you have to try and keep those behind you out of your slipstream, which can be very difficult."

Rather P2 than P1 at the start in Mexico?

He continued: "These cars are hugely matched, but they have different strengths and weaknesses. The Red Bull has nowhere near the straight-line speed that the Mercedes has, and on that part of the circuit it's all about top speed."

"You can think of a scenario where Max might have a faster car over a lap and qualify himself on pole, while Lewis is slower and qualifies second or third. With that difference in top speed, Lewis could just reach the corner first if both drivers make a good start," said Priestley.

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