Shanghai 2009: Post-Qualifying Car Weights

Shanghai 2009: Post-Qualifying Car Weights

Detailed below are the weights of all the cars post-qualifying. With this information now available from the FIA, we can assess the competitiveness of each of the drivers in qualifying and also have a few guesses at their strategies for tomorrow’s race. Safety car periods negate any prediction though, as the pilots can conserve fuel when following the Mercedes, although in previous Chinese Grands Prix, Bernd Mylander was rarely pressed into action. The results are listed in order of qualifying lap times, and it should also be noted that although Timo Glock set the fourteenth fastest time in Q2, the German has been demoted to nineteenth due to a penalty.

Shanghai 2009
Post-Qualifying Car Weights

Car Weight

1. German FlagSebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing 644
2. Spanish FlagFernando Alonso Renault 637
3. Australian FlagMark Webber Red Bull Racing 646.5
4. Brazilian FlagRubens Barrichello Brawn 661
5. British FlagJenson Button Brawn 659
6. Italian FlagJarno Trulli Toyota 664.5
7. German FlagNico Rosberg Williams 650.5
8. Finnish FlagKimi Raikkonen Ferrari 673.5
9. British FlagLewis Hamilton McLaren 679
10. Swiss FlagSebastien Buemi Scuderia Toro Rosso 673
11. German FlagNick Heidfeld BMW 679
12. Finnish FlagHeikki Kovalainen McLaren 697
13. Brazilian FlagFelipe Massa Ferrari 690
14. German FlagTimo Glock Toyota 652
15. Japanese FlagKazuki Nakajima Williams 682.7
16. French FlagSebastien Bourdais Scuderia Toro Rosso 690
17. Brazilian FlagNelson Piquet Jr. Renault 697.9
18. Polish FlagRobert Kubica BMW 659
19. German FlagAdrian Sutil Force India 648
20. Italian FlagGiancarlo Fisichella Force India 679.5

From the table above, we can see that both Red Bulls are much lighter than the Brawns and that Sebastian Vettel will likely pit ahead of team mate Mark Webber. Although the first of the stops will be most likely be made by Renault, with Fernando Alonso being the lightest on the grid by some margin. The next heaviest car to the Spaniard is Vettel’s Red Bull, but even then the difference is a substantial 7kg.

Lewis Hamilton, Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastien Buemi are all heavy and thus qualified in the final three positions of the top ten, although this is perhaps the best they could achieve in reality. Having said that though, this trio is not the heaviest of all, not by a long-shot. Heikki Kovalainen and Nelson Piquet Jr have 697kg and 697.9kg of fuel onboard respectively. My initial reaction to this was a daring one-stopper, but there is no way the tyres would be able to withstand that kind of pressure on the abrasive Shanghai surface – they would be worn down to the canvas and beyond. Instead, it is likely that both Kovalainen and Piquet will just run deep into the first stint.

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