The short stage have seen driver under pressure with graining, particularly on the super-soft tyre. Those starting on it have a tyre that’s faster over a sole lap but more horizontal to graining and less tough under a heavy fuel weight. However Red Bull will have to use the super soft tyre at a few points through the race at which point they could become susceptible to anyone chasing them, particularly as their straight line speeds are between the slowest turns.
Lewis will be eager to switch to the intermediate compound tyre as soon as possible. Following qualifying Whitmarsh said that wasn’t a worry because they were expecting most cars to make two pit stops something else we haven’t seen much of in dry races this year.
However the teams will still be hunting for gaps in the traffic at the back them which they can get their cars out in after a pit stop. Red Bull made a smart and little statemented on call with this in the last race. It seems they gambled on when Rosberg would make his pit stop and get Sebastian Vettel in near the beginning to take advantage of it. Either that or they were very lucky. But, given Schumacher pitted on the lap previous to Rosberg came in; it was a justifiable risk to take. And it surely worked Vettel got in front of Hamilton by creation his pit stop earlier.
This is determining up to be the most erratic race of the year so far. And that’s before we believe the complexities of traffic – 24 cars on one of F1’s shortest tracks – and the weather, which keeps threatening to make rainfall