Questions tagged [formula-1]

For questions relating to the class of open-wheeled auto racing known as Formula 1.

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In the history of Formula 1, when has the fastest qualifier not started the race on pole?

Lewis Hamilton has a 5 place grid penalty for the Chinese Grand Prix this weekend, due to having to change his gearbox. Harsh, but that's the rule. He's been on pole for the first two races this ...
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29 votes
1 answer
26k views

How are the number of laps in an F1 race determined?

The number of laps in a F1 race seem to differ wildly. Obviously the length of each lap varies from circuit to circuit, but how are the number of laps for each race decided? Additionally, is this ...
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21 votes
2 answers
7k views

Why does safety car start at the end of the racing grid?

During the start of a Formula 1 race, the safety car is positioned behind the cars, and it starts together with them. Why is that (why does the safety car not wait outside the track like it does for ...
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17 votes
2 answers
3k views

Why there is no number 13 in Formula 1?

Why is number 13 not used in Formula 1? Is it just superstition? Was the number ever used?
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16 votes
1 answer
3k views

What's the (official) motivation for requiring cars to have at least one liter of fuel post-race?

I've read in the news about the rule regarding fuel left Vettel was disqualified from second place after his car was found to have less than the mandatory one litre of fuel required for post-race ...
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16 votes
1 answer
2k views

How does FIA enforce the Formula 1 testing ban?

Formula 1 has this rule of banning off-season (Apart from the official F1 approved tests at the end of February or the start of March) and in-season testing. This is done mainly to reduce costs to ...
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15 votes
2 answers
28k views

How does the effectively-free pitstop work during the safety car?

In Formula 1, in the event of a safety car appearing, you often see cars racing to the pits in order to get a pit stop which is effectively free. How does this circumstance result in the pitstop ...
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11 votes
1 answer
9k views

Why are Formula 1 tracks usually oriented clockwise?

In other sports, for example track and field athletics, the track is always oriented counter-clockwise. Why aren't Formula 1 tracks oriented similarly? (Maybe it's just me, but I find it much more ...
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10 votes
2 answers
1k views

Lowest championship finishing position for a defending champion

Which F1 World Drivers Champion has the lowest finishing position in the season following a championship winning year? Examples: 1981, 1983 and 1987 WDC Nelson Piquet finished 11th in 1982, 5th in ...
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10 votes
1 answer
256 views

Driver with the longest time between F1 race starts

Robert Kubica, who last drove for Renault in the 2010 season, is now confirmed to be back on the grid for Williams next year, over 8 years since his last Grand Prix start. Assuming he goes on to ...
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10 votes
2 answers
2k views

energy efficiency of the 2014 Formula 1 cars?

How much more energy efficient are the new 2014 Formula 1 cars compared to the 2013 cars?
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9 votes
2 answers
5k views

How can F1 teams be competitive if they produce engines for each other?

There are several aspects I don't understand about teams who build engines for their competitors. Take for example Mercedes AMG who build engines for other teams like Sahara Force India, Williams ...
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9 votes
1 answer
431 views

Can the official fastest lap of a race be set in the first lap in F1?

Actually there are many reasons that make the cars slower in the first lap of a race. Cars accelerate from 0 kph Traffic is at maximum Tyres are not at ideal temperature (still soft tyres can perform ...
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9 votes
2 answers
558 views

What does "corrected time" mean in Formula 1?

I was watching an old formula one race (Imola, 1994 to be specific). At some point, Michael Schumacher was behind Gerhard Berger on the track. But the race narrator said that due to this "corrected ...
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9 votes
1 answer
1k views

Formula 1: KERS and DRS

Over the past couple of seasons, overtaking in Formula 1 has moved from sheer car power and driver skill to also include technology like KERS and DRS. What exactly are these KERS and DRS? How does it ...
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9 votes
1 answer
567 views

Who benefits from FIA fees and fines?

Frequently we see fines being levied in Formula One (for example, for unsafe pit lane releases, a team or driver may receive a fine of several thousand dollars such as Mercedes earlier this year). I ...
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8 votes
6 answers
380 views

When has the driver who won most races in a season not been champion?

This season could be interesting if Hamilton wins the final race of the season and Rosberg finishes 2nd or 3rd as you would have the unusual situation where the driver with most wins during the season ...
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8 votes
2 answers
6k views

Were the super-hard tyres ever actually used?

For the 2018 F1 season, Pirelli introduced two new tyre compounds - the hypersoft, and the super-hard. For 2019, the compound system will be simplified so that at each race they'll simply be known as "...
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8 votes
3 answers
10k views

Safety Car vs Virtual Safety Car

In modern F1, race neutralization via Safety Car is done in two variations, the traditional SC Period, where the Safety Car actually goes out on track and collects the entire field to form a slow-...
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8 votes
1 answer
3k views

Which Formula One races did Scuderia Ferrari not take part in?

Scuderia Ferrari are the only team to have competed in every season of the Formula One World Championship since its inception in 1950. However, during the 2019 Chinese Grand Prix, the 1000th F1 race, ...
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8 votes
2 answers
3k views

What is the coldest Formula One race ever held?

With the announcement of three new F1 races in Europe during October and early November, there's been a lot of discussion about the potential for those races to be unusually cold - especially the ...
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8 votes
2 answers
248 views

When was the last 'clean' race?

When was the last 'clean' Formula 1 race? A 'clean' race is one in which all cars that made a time in qualifications ended the full race (they did not retire or receive a DNF or DNS).
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8 votes
3 answers
17k views

Why are curbs used in motorsport?

In many motor sports, there are often curbs placed along the parts of the track where the driving line runs close to the edge of the track. This allows the driver to drift off the track slightly when ...
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8 votes
2 answers
1k views

When has a driver ever been penalised for deliberately driving into another?

In the 2017 Azerbaijan Grand Prix on 25th June, Sebastien Vettel appeared to deliberately drive into Lewis Hamilton while they were behind the safety car. Vettel was subsequently given a 10 second ...
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8 votes
1 answer
358 views

Why did Force India get docked all constructors points?

Prior to the Hungarian Grand Prix, Sahara Force India entered administration and was bought out by the consortium Racing Point UK, renaming themselves Racing Point Force India in the Belgian Grand ...
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8 votes
1 answer
275 views

Has anyone ever taken pole position without setting any fastest sector times?

During qualifying for the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix, Max Verstappen very nearly took pole position despite not setting the fastest time in any of the three sectors. (Other drivers had gone faster than ...
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8 votes
2 answers
3k views

How are race stewards selected in F1?

Aside from Charlie Whiting, the FIA Race Director, the race stewards who look at and deliberate on on-track incidents are apparently not the same every weekend. There have been races where I hear the ...
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7 votes
2 answers
2k views

In F1 classification, what is ON?

I saw that on reddit. On thye official clasisfication for the Grand Prix, the second to last column is 'ON'. Seems to be something relating to laps, but I can't figure out what. So what is ON in ...
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7 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why do F1 drivers move towards the pit wall at the end of the race?

On the last lap, at the start-finish straight, just as they are ending the race, F1 drivers (especially those at the front) move their car off the racing line towards the wall. I'm guessing that they ...
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7 votes
1 answer
6k views

Formula One and Indy Cars

What are the main specific differences between F1 and Indy cars. Such as weight limits, engine restrictions, fuel, etc.
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7 votes
2 answers
3k views

What are scrubbed tyres?

I'm reading Mark Webber's book and in it he says that during the the 2005 Belgian grand prix he was amazed that his team put him on new intermediate tyres instead of scrubbed tyres on a drying track. ...
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7 votes
1 answer
5k views

What decides where you are in the pitlane, and is there an advantage that could be got depending on where you are in the pit lane?

In F1, the teams currently seem to be stacked where Mercedes/ferrari are early in the pitlane, and Williams is at the end. How is the order of teams decided for the pitlane, and is a position ...
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7 votes
2 answers
501 views

F1 Safety Cars & Medical Cars

Why are there two safety cars and two medical cars at every Formula 1 race? Bernd Mayländer only drives one of them...
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7 votes
1 answer
282 views

How are driver numbers assigned in F1?

In F1, Drivers have an assigned number. But how are these numbers decided? Is it Drivers Choice? Constructors Choice? Randomly assigned? Also, if the number is chosen, who has first pick?
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6 votes
2 answers
18k views

Why are cars allowed to unlap themselves during safety car period?

As FIA indicates in Article 39.12 (sporting regulations 2017), lapped cars may unlap themselves once cars were lined up behind the safety car. 39.12 If the clerk of the course considers it safe to ...
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6 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why did/do F1 racing teams wear face masks?

I've seen this clip on Youtube here, were the box crew of Ferrari are shown all wearing protective face masks. The clip is from 1998 and I don't know if this is still the case. I'm wondering why they ...
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6 votes
2 answers
16k views

With the blue flag rules, how are you meant to unlap yourself?

In F1 (and probably other motorsports) there is the blue flag rule. When a car is about to be lapped, they are shown a blue flag, and must give the lapping car an occasion to pass them at the earliest ...
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6 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why do F1 drivers move the wheel so much?

When driving other types of car, drivers usually turn the steering wheel smoothly. Sudden jerking movements are generally only needed to recover from mistakes. In F1 the drivers constantly turn the ...
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6 votes
2 answers
1k views

How is the relegation of pole position driver managed in F1?

If the driver who received the best time in qualifying is relegated to a "lower" grid position (for example for the change of the transmission or of the engine, etc.) what changes about the statistics ...
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6 votes
2 answers
534 views

Are there official Formula One rules regarding apex disputes, faults in passing and the like?

Is there any official rule book for racing in Formula 1 to determine who's at fault in a racing incident, who has the apex/exit etc? I'm aware there's one describing other things like pit stops, ...
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  • 163
6 votes
1 answer
3k views

What made Mercedes faster than all the other F1 teams in 2014?

What did Mercedes do in 2014 to become half a second faster than their closest rivals in each lap? Does it have to do with aerodynamics or the engine? What are the speculations at least? Did they ...
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6 votes
1 answer
851 views

Why are the practice sessions called "free" in Formula 1?

Free practice is a widely used term in motorsports, but I specifically wonder what "free" means in Formula 1. I've some choices without any reference. Is it related to drivers, car parts, number of ...
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6 votes
1 answer
2k views

What are the widest tires to be used in F1?

Along with several aerodynamics and chassis weight regulation changes, the 2017 F1 season introduces wider tires. 2016 Front/Rear tire width: 245mm / 325mm 2017 Front/Rear tire width: 305mm / 405mm (+...
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6 votes
1 answer
191 views

What constitutes the "engine" in the Formula 1 per-season engine replacement limit?

I'm not necessarily talking about the "engine" vs "power unit" debate with the new energy recovery systems and whatnot, though that is part of the problem. I'm more interested in the realm of the ...
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  • 163
6 votes
2 answers
3k views

F1: Mandatory tyre compounds

My question is pretty straightforward. FIA tyres and wheels regulation states: Pirelli nominate two mandatory sets for each car for the race (which can be of different compounds) and one further ...
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6 votes
1 answer
182 views

Does the new f1 double points rule apply for all places?

From formula1.com: Double drivers’ and constructors’ points will be awarded at the final race of the Formula One season - Abu Dhabi for 2014 - in order to maximise focus on the championship ...
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5 votes
3 answers
3k views

When 'lapped cars may overtake', can you unlap yourself more than once?

With Latifi being 5 laps down at the end of the 2020 Hungarian Grand Prix, I wonder... if a safety car were to be deployed, and at some point lapped cars were allowed to overtake, could Latifi have ...
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5 votes
1 answer
725 views

Why isn't a Formula One track dusted off before a Grand Prix?

A Formula One track has a racing line, the most optimal part of the track, which is clean & has the best grip due to tyre rubber being laid as a result of Practice & Qualifying sessions. The ...
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  • 1,573
5 votes
1 answer
402 views

What is the record for winning a Formula 1 race by leading least number of laps?

What is the record for winning a Formula 1 race by a driver who has lead the least number of laps in that race? For example: if one driver has been in position 1 for the entire race but on the last ...
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  • 1,573
5 votes
2 answers
753 views

Formula 1 Free practice without a super licence

Formula One drivers must have an FIA Super Licence, but what about (young) drivers who take part only in free practice sessions? Are they allowed to drive without the license?
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