27

I was so interested in this myself that I wasn't going to stop at anything to get a good answer. Sadly, small research didn't get me the answers I was after so eventually I spent 14 hours reviewing the reports of every Grand Prix since 1950. To the date of this answer there have been 864 of them, which is why it took so long. Grands Prix in which the ...


23

The number of laps are decided by taking a distance of 305 km and dividing it by the length of a lap (rounded up), which varies from racetrack to racetrack. (1) quoting the official regulations (from 2011): 5.3 The distance of all races, from the start signal referred to in Article 38.9 to the chequered flag, shall be equal to the least number of ...


16

The car that is behind the grid at the start is not the safety car but the medical car. The actual cars look similar, but there are two separate cars. The safety car pull into the pits before the race cars line up for the start. The reason the medical car waits there is that there is thought to be a higher chance of crashes immediately at the start. This ...


13

At the first corner there is a greater probability of a crash happening as all the drivers are looking for opportunities to overtake. For this reason the course car and also medical chase cars, which you see immediately behind the grid, are positioned at the back of the grid for the race start. Once all the cars have come to a halt on the grid, and the ...


11

The "free" pit-stop doesn't exist any more, especially since the rules were changed last year that meant drivers had to stick to a certain speed when the safety car was on track, I will explain that in more detail later on. The basic premise of the "free" pit-stop is that under normal circumstances you lose more time relative to the cars not stopping than ...


11

Not quite. Jan Lammers started the 1982 Dutch Grand Prix on July 3rd 1982, and left the sport at the end of that season. He then returned for the end of the 1992 season and started two further races, the first of which was the 1992 Japanese Grand Prix on October 25th 1992, a gap of 10 years, 3 months and 22 days. Kubica, by comparison, will return after a ...


11

After winning the 1952 and 1953 World Championships, Alberto Ascari only finished 25th in the 1954 Championship. He failed to finish any of the four races he entered that season, and his only points came from setting the fastest laps at the British and Spanish GPs (the former was shared wih six other drivers, hence his bizarre final points tally of 1 1/7). ...


11

The "ON" column shows which lap that driver set their fastest lap. E.g. Hamilton set his fastest lap of 1:32.764 on lap 53.


10

There are many differences between F1 cars and Indy/Champ cars, too many to list here but the basic difference is that F1 cars are more technologically advanced than Indy cars, as you would expect as F1 is the pinnacle of motorsport. Current F1 cars have hybrid engine systems including ERS (Electronic Recovery Systems) that harvest energy such as braking ...


10

Number 13 isn't in use just from superstition. The FIA Formula 1 World Championship entry list does not have a number 13. The number is generally considered to be an unlucky number. It was used in the early years of the sport but in the 1920s it was dropped after the Delage factory team suffered two fatal accidents with the number in the course of ...


9

KERS stands for Kinetic Energy Recovery System. It's a system similar to those used in many hybrid cars: It recovers the kinetic energy of the vehicle when braking and stores it either mechanically in a flywheel or electrical in a battery or capacitor. This energy is then used later under acceleration. The use of KERS in Formula is limited to an additional ...


9

The 1994 Imola Grand Prix is remembered mostly for the deaths of two drivers: rookie Roland Ratzenberger during Saturday qualifying, and three-time world champion Ayrton Senna during the race. Senna crashed on the sixth lap, causing the red flag to be shown, so that all drivers returned to the pits. Senna received medical treatment on-site, and was then ...


9

A similar case happened during the 1982 season, where five drivers (Didier Pironi, John Watson, Alain Prost, Niki Lauda, Rene Arnoux) shared the most number of wins with two wins each, while the eventual champion (Keke Rosberg) only had one. The circumstances behind the championship were quite bizarre, though, as Pironi suffered a career-ending accident ...


9

After Alberto Ascari, the following champions also faced their worst campaign on next season. Alberto Ascari - 25 - 1954 Juan Manuel Fangio - 14 - 1958 Mario Andretti - 12 - 1979 Jody Scheckter - 19 - 1980 Nelson Piquet - 11 - 1982 Niki Lauda - 10 - 1985 Damon Hill - 12 - 1997


8

The short answer, is that there is far more to F1 than just engines, so even if a team is losing some competitiveness by selling their engines to a rival, they still have other areas where they can compete. Longer answer: In F1, engines are very expensive, typically around $3M per unit. Imagine 4 engines for each car during the season, that's $24M alone ...


8

From Formula 1 Official Website. The VSC will primarily be used when double waved yellow flags are needed on any section of the track, but the circumstances are not such to warrant the safety car itself. In the event of a more serious incident, particularly if competitors or officials are in immediate physical danger, which is not ...


7

According to this BBC article, the sparks are caused by titanium skid plates on the underside of the car contacting the track.


7

Basically, yes it's just superstition. I remember noticing this in the 1990 season where the Osella/Fondmetal team were only running one car (Olivier Grouillard). Logically they should have run car #13 but were allocated #14. Here is one of a number of sources for the superstition story online: f1fanatic.co.uk Update for 2014 season: In a rules change ...


7

The only time pole positions are counted in a driver's statistics in F1 are when they are officially classified in the race starting grid on pole position. One good example would be Michael Schumacher, who, in Monaco 2012, despite qualifying on pole, started 6th after his 5-place grid penalty from crashing with Sergio Perez in Catalunya was served. Mark ...


7

It happened in 1967. Jim Clark won four of the eleven Grands Prix but Denny Hulme was the eventual champion with only two wins. This is in part due to Jim Clark failing to finish four races, while Denny Hulme only failed to finish twice and scoring points in all nine other races.


7

An F1 car driven on the limit is often very close to crashing, oversteer is the main risk for the driver. Oversteer is where the car wants to "swap ends" as there is so much power going through the rear wheels that they want to overtake the front, you don't tend to get this in normal road cars. The driver of an F1 car can solve this problem by either ...


7

There are a few other examples of drivers deliberately driving into each other or simply crashing for their own gain or their team, however the punishments were always quite inconsistent. So I have a few other examples here which will show you the inconsistency of the punishements carried out for deliberate crashing Schumacher vs Villeneuve (Jerez 1997) ...


7

I will answer this from the perspective of Formula 1 as I am most familiar with that formulae. In F1 you are perfectly entitled to unlap yourself and it does happen from time to time. The blue flag rule is for cars that are about to be lapped, ie are SLOWER than the car approaching them, if you are unlapping yourself then you will be QUICKER than the other ...


7

They're not facemasks but fire resistant clothing, in particular balaclavas. Refuelling an F1 car has always been a slightly risky business - moving a highly flammable liquid around at high speed in the vicinity of very hot things isn't something that would be recommended in a health and safety manual - so the pit crews, just like the drivers, wear ...


7

"Scrubbed" tires in F1 parlance are ones that have done a short number of laps (perhaps one run in qualifying for example but not enough to be worn out). They will have been through a heat cycle and lost some of the tread depth. In the particular scenario described scrubbed tires could have been advantageous since they would have been less prone to ...


6

What did they do? Their job, better than other teams did theirs. It's widely accepted that Mercedes' 2014 advantage comes primarily from their engine (note that the same engine powered 7 of the top 8 at this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix so it cannot be exclusively attributed to the engine else all those teams would be 0.5 secs faster). Only yesterday, Sky ...


6

You asked Why are curbs used in motorsport? Short Answer Curbs are used primarily as boundaries in motorsports. Background There are several different types of curbs depending the circuit as well as the highest paying series that is going to leverage the circuit as a venue for one of it's events. The FIA or Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile ...


6

It has never happened that a driver who was 4th or further before the last race has won the Formula 1 Driver's Championship. Below, you can find a list of situations in which the winner had a reduced point margin. These are the years where the Driver Champion won within 25 points: 2012 Vettel wins by 3 points but lead since last 4 races 2010 Vettel wins ...


6

There is another purpose to this rule besides lapped cars being mixed up between the leaders. Consider this example: We are in the 2nd half of the race. Two drivers (let's say, Hulkenberg and Perez) fight for P10, which is effectively a fight for a Championship point. They are far from the leader (almost a lap down). Perez is currently P11 and a few ...


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