Singapore GP Technical Analysis:
In this post, I’ve compared the fastest FP2 laps of Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen during the Singapore GP weekend. Let’s take a look into their driving styles based on the driver telemetry available. Speed, RPM and gear traces of the particular run are used for the purpose of Technical Analysis.
The speed trace shown starts exactly at the beginning of the first DRS zone (for purpose of syncing traces). Max maintains a difference of 2-3 Kph on Lewis until the end of the first straight. Hamilton is a little late on the brakes compared to Max and carries a higher speed (additional 3 kph) into T1. Max goes deeper into T1, but he gets on to the accelerator quicker and reaches a top speed of 168 kph before braking for T3, whereas Lewis on the other hand reaches 159 kph before braking for T3. This shows that Lewis does a smooth application of brakes in comparison to Max (who brakes deeper and longer and accelerates to a maximum) and comes out ahead after T3.
T4 is flat out and here Lewis seems to be having a steering movement due to riding of the kerbs. Both drivers reach a maximum of 313 kph at the end of the second DRS zone.
Minimum apex speeds for Hamilton vs Verstappen
- T1: 146 vs 143
- T3: 90 vs 85
- T5: 148 vs 145
- T7: 125 vs 119
- T8: 81 vs 79
- T10: 150 vs 145
- T13: 70 vs 65
- T14: 97 vs 91
- T16: 116 vs 107
- T18: 101 vs 96
- T19: 115 vs 111
- T21: 118 vs 108
At the end of the second DRS zone, Max goes deeper into T7 and as a result Lewis has an advantage of +6kph. The approach to T9 and T10 replicates the way Max has taken the corners over the first sector: Early on the brakes and going deeper into the turn. Max reaches a top speed of 288 kph at the end of the third DRS zone. And Lewis is around 2 kph slower. Sector 2 looks to be very close between Verstappen and Hamilton.
Max seems to have lost a lot of time in S3 as he applies more brakes and loses out to Lewis in maximum apex speeds. This case can be visualized particularly from T14 through to T21. Even though Max goes deep into the final sector turns, he is able to get to the throttle quicker.
The biggest difference in apex speeds can be seen at T16 where Lewis is at 116 and Max is at 107 kph. The standout comparison is that when Lewis gets to comparatively higher speeds before braking zones (T19 and T20), he brakes earlier but he does not go deep into the turn as much as Max does (T14 and T16) when he is in a similar case. And I think the difference of 0.197 lies in their driving styles. Looking at the top speeds of the Mercedes and Honda power units, both seem to be extremely close at the end of the DRS zones.