The post-qualifying weights of the cars competing in the Turkish Grand Prix have been (not quite) published by the FIA, and from the data provided we can see who did well during Saturday’s running and who did not. Also, from this data and Williams’s reckoning that a normalised distance of 5km around Istanbul Park requires 2.49kg of fuel, we can work out that the 5.338km circuit would use 2.66kg of fuel. Taking away the minimum car-and-driver weight of 605kg, plus 2 laps (5.32kg) for grid forming and margin, we can have a guess at when each of the drivers will stop first.
|1.||Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing||649.5||39.2||15|
|2.||Jenson Button Brawn||655.5||45.2||17|
|3.||Rubens Barrichello Brawn||652.5||42.2||16|
|4.||Mark Webber Red Bull Racing||656||45.7||17|
|5.||Jarno Trulli Toyota||652||41.7||16|
|6.||Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari||658||47.7||18|
|7.||Felipe Massa Ferrari||654||43.7||16|
|8.||Fernando Alonso Renault||644.5||34.2||13|
|9.||Nico Rosberg Williams||660||49.7||19|
|10.||Robert Kubica BMW||664||53.7||20|
|11.||Nick Heidfeld BMW||681.5||71.2||27|
|12.||Kazuki Nakajima Williams||680.4||70.1||26|
|13.||Timo Glock Toyota||689||78.7||30|
|14.||Heikki Kovalainen McLaren||665||54.7||21|
|15.||Adrian Sutil Force India||668.5||58.2||22|
|16.||Lewis Hamilton McLaren||696.5||86.2||32|
|17.||Nelson Piquet Jr. Renault||689.6||79.3||30|
|18.||Sebastien Buemi Scuderia Toro Rosso||686.5||76.2||29|
|19.||Giancarlo Fisichella Force India||688.5||78.2||29|
|20.||Sebastien Bourdais Scuderia Toro Rosso||701||90.7||34|
Sebastian Vettel is a little lighter than both the Brawn pilots, but there is only one lap in it to Rubens Barrichello and two to Jenson Button. Interestingly, Jenson Button managed to out-qualify his team mate with a heavier car, indicating that Barrichello wasn’t entirely happy with the handling of his BGP 001. The rest of the top-ten is fairly standard, with Kimi Raikkonen Nico Rosberg and Robert Kubica being the heaviest. Although Fernando Alonso sticks out a little as being light in comparison to those around him – I’d expect Alonso to make up a place or two at the start.
Heikki Kovalainen and Adrian Sutil in P14 and P15 respectively have very similar fuel loads. This should make for some interesting viewing tomorrow, as Lewis Hamilton lost out to Sutil in qualifying, the Force India pilot making his Mercedes-powered car go faster than the similarly powered McLaren. If Kovalainen cannot get away from Sutil, then I fear there may be trouble on the horizon for the Finn.
Nick Heidfeld, Kazuki Nakajima and Timo Glock could be attempting a two-stopper, each having enough fuel to get to around the halfway mark. Also going for the mid-race point before stopping are Lewis Hamilton and Sebastien Bourdais (the two heaviest on the grid) and possibly Giancarlo Fisichella, Sebastien Buemi and Nelson Piquet Jr.
The starting tyre choice for the two-stoppers will depend on what the track temperature does tomorrow afternoon. As we saw in qualifying today, the track could easily pass the 45°C mark, which is the recommended limit Bridgestone have imposed on the soft compound. Interestingly though, the track cooled slightly as qualifying progressed, indicating that the two-stoppers may want to start on the hard and move to the soft.
- The qualifying results can be viewed here: Turkey 2009: Qualifying Result.
- The live qualifying notes can be viewed here: Turkey 2009: Live Qualifying Notes.
- The grid (inclusive of penalties) can be viewed here once published: Turkey 2009: The Grid.
- The qualifying report can be viewed here: Turkey 2009: Sebastian Vettel Takes Pole Position Ahead Of Brawns.