September 21, 2013

Comparing Vettel and Rosberg: What does 0.092 of a second look like?

It was too close for comfort in Singapore for Red Bull who decided to save an unused set of option tires for the race.  Nico Rosberg came very, very close to nipping the top spot from Vettel.

I went to the onboard and lined up the two runs, which were just 0.091 of a second apart and it's quite interesting to see the different characteristics between the cars and the two drivers side by side.

I encourage you to stop the clip in various places and compare.  You will find Vettel almost always is braking later and carries less speed into the apex than Rosberg  but is consistently faster from mid corner on.

The Mercedes is quite a bit quicker in a straight line 298 km/h vs 292 for the Red Bull,  but Vettel knows how to take advantage of the extra downforce the RB9 is producing and, on those short straights, his advantage in speed will pay off if he's ahead.     Were he to be behind after the first corner, the deficit in top speed will make it hard for him to pass.

Will it be over in one corner tomorrow, another Vettel domination?  I'm afraid it's quite likely, especially with Seb holding that extra set of brand new options in hand.  One unknown (to us), is the state of his gearbox if it's the same one he was nursing at Monza.

Check the video after the break.

Singapore GP Qualifying results

Pos  Driver               Team/Car              Time       Gap     
 1.  Sebastian Vettel     Red Bull-Renault      1m42.841s                 
 2.  Nico Rosberg         Mercedes              1m42.932s  +0.091s        
 3.  Romain Grosjean      Lotus-Renault         1m43.058s  +0.217s        
 4.  Mark Webber          Red Bull-Renault      1m43.152s  +0.311s        
 5.  Lewis Hamilton       Mercedes              1m43.254s  +0.413s        
 6.  Felipe Massa         Ferrari               1m43.890s  +1.049s        
 7.  Fernando Alonso      Ferrari               1m43.938s  +1.097s        
 8.  Jenson Button        McLaren-Mercedes      1m44.282s  +1.441s        
 9.  Daniel Ricciardo     Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m44.439s  +1.598s        
10.  Esteban Gutierrez    Sauber-Ferrari        No time set               
Q2 cut-off time: 1m44.555s                                   Gap **
11.  Nico Hulkenberg      Sauber-Ferrari        1m44.555s  +1.650s        
12.  Jean-Eric Vergne     Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m44.588s  +1.683s        
13.  Kimi Raikkonen       Lotus-Renault         1m44.658s  +1.753s        
14.  Sergio Perez         McLaren-Mercedes      1m44.752s  +1.847s        
15.  Adrian Sutil         Force India-Mercedes  1m45.185s  +2.280s        
16.  Valtteri Bottas      Williams-Renault      1m45.388s  +2.483s        
Q1 cut-off time: 1m45.982s                                   Gap * 
17.  Paul di Resta        Force India-Mercedes  1m46.121s  +1.925s        
18.  Pastor Maldonado     Williams-Renault      1m46.619s  +2.423s        
19.  Charles Pic          Caterham-Renault      1m48.111s  +3.915s        
20.  Giedo van der Garde  Caterham-Renault      1m48.320s  +4.124s        
21.  Jules Bianchi        Marussia-Cosworth     1m48.830s  +4.634s        
22.  Max Chilton          Marussia-Cosworth     1m48.930s  +4.734s        
107% time: 1m51.489s                                                   
* Gap to quickest in Q1                                                   
** Gap to quickest in Q2          


  1. Thanks for posting this article. I'm just interested in specific knowledge here and there, not really a degree, on topics that interest me.

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  2. if you look at their hands, you can see how much more stable the RB9 seems. But the real striking bit is how much faster Vettel is from corner apex out. that will make him very hard to pass

  3. You're a piece of shit Eddie.

  4. Why no link to vimeo, only embedded? I'd like to download this from vimeo because it would play much more smoothly in my offline player.

  5. I should think the answer would be obvious...

  6. OK, I'm 6 months late to this: Thanks for this very revealing side by side video. We kept hearing about Vettel and the RB9 being so quick out of corners but it's this show just how much faster he was last year. Some kudos to Rosberg for being right there with him.


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