BELGIAN GRAND PRIX 2019: QUALIFYING ANALYSIS


This post will compare the Q3 laps of the Ferrari drivers, Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel. The duo secured a 1-2 front row lock-out for the second time since the Bahrain Grand Prix this season.

The telemetry data compares the speed (in Km/h), RPM, gear shifts, throttle and brake applications of the two drivers. The data is taken from the F1 Live Telemetry app. More details on the data extraction is explained later.

Speed Comparison of Charles Leclerc & Sebastian Vettel during the Q3 run

Sector 1:

There is not much of a difference between the two drivers through T2-T3-T4. Vettel goes fastest at the end of Kemmel Straight at a speed of 346 km/h compared to Leclerc (344 km/h). Vettel goes to lead the first sector from Leclerc by a smallest margin of 7 thousandth of a second.

Sector 2:

Coming to the entry of T5, Vettel starts to brake earlier in comparison to Leclerc, who is able to take the right-hander at a higher speed (at 170 km/h) compared to Vettel (163 km/h). This compromises his line through the next consecutive set of right and left hand turns.

  • T5: Leclerc (170 km/h) vs Vettel (163 km/h)
  • T6: Leclerc (178 km/h) vs Vettel (166 km/h)
  • T8: Leclerc (110 km/h) vs Vettel (106 km/h)
  • T9: Leclerc (191 km/h) vs Vettel (187 km/h)
  • T10: Leclerc (283 km/h) vs Vettel (281 km/h)
  • T11: Leclerc (179 km/h) vs Vettel (173 km/h)
  • T12: Leclerc (192 km/h) vs Vettel (199 km/h)
RPM Variation of Charles Leclerc & Sebastian Vettel during the Q3 run

It can also be seen that the higher RPM for Vettel around Turn 12 corresponds to a lower gear (5th gear) compared to Leclerc’s (6th gear). A similar case of RPM-Gear Shift comparison at the Fagnes corner (T14)

Gear Changes per lap of Charles Leclerc & Sebastian Vettel during the Q3 run

Throughout the middle sector, Leclerc is able to carry more speed than his teammate and a result, Vettel loses around 4 tenths of a second, which has almost ruined his hot lap.

Sector 3:

It is impossible to gain the time lost in the second sector, in the third and final sector as it includes the high-speed sweeping left hander of Blanchimont and the final chicane before the run along the start straight.

Coming to the end of the lap, Vettel had a massive lock-up on his front right before the bus stop chicane (Turn 18) which compromised his line through to Turn 19 leading to the straight. Sebastian Vettel is 3 tenths down on Leclerc at the end of the third sector.

Sector Time Comparison
Sebastian Vettel locks-up before the Turn 18 Chicane

I would like to thank Kurt Moran for explaining on how the data can be extracted from the video recording of the lap. The following link conatins more information on the process of extracting data: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUgvhnQawbw&t=37s

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