2022 Bahrain Grand Prix - Sunday
THE RACE TYRE STORY
- Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc led a Ferrari one-two from pole using a three-stop strategy in Bahrain: two initial stints on the P Zero Red soft C3 followed by a stint on the P Zero Yellow medium C2 and a final run again on the soft tyre after pitting under the safety car with 11 laps to go. Leclerc also set the fastest lap of the race on the soft tyre, shortly before the finish. His team mate Carlos Sainz followed the same strategy.
- Under the 2022 regulations, all the drivers had an entirely free choice of tyres at the start. Everyone opted to start the race on the soft tyre, with the exception of the two McLarens, which fitted the medium for the first stint.
- Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton made the first 18-inch tyre racing pit stop of the year, moving from the soft to the P Zero White hard tyre on lap 11.
- The race got underway at 6pm with temperatures of 24 degrees centigrade ambient and 27 degrees on track – slightly warmer than the previous evenings – before dropping a couple of degrees by the finish.
HOW THE COMPOUNDS MADE THE DIFFERENCE
- HARD C1: This compound was used by seven drivers during the race. It proved to be slower but more consistent than the other compounds, although required a longer warm up time with tyre blanket temperatures restricted to 70 degrees, making the undercut less effective. Mercedes used the hard for the second stint.
- MEDIUM C2: A central tyre to the race. It performed well, with degradation in line with the values that had been previously measured. The majority of the teams had just one set available, but those with two used both of them.
- SOFT C3: ·The key compound to the race, which offered an advantage in terms of performance at the start, and that’s the reason why it was used by all the drivers apart from McLaren. Degradation levels were again in line with what had been seen over the previous days.
“The championship debut of the new Formula 1 regulations with our latest 18-inch tyres delivered a race with plenty of excitement from start to finish and some great battles. We are satisfied with how the tyres performed. The soft and medium compounds were key here, while the hard represented an alternative and more consistent choice. The lower temperature of the tyre blankets this year also contributed to the challenge of putting the tyres in the correct window, making the undercut for the hard less powerful than usual, while the abrasive nature of the track ensured that it was going to be at least two stops for every driver. The strategy was also influenced by the late safety car, which finally led to three stops and set up a dramatic sprint finish to the race. Congratulations to Ferrari for their one-two!”
- ART Grand Prix’s Theo Pourchaire was the winner of an action-packed Formula 2 feature race, choosing the most popular strategy of starting on the P Zero White hard before switching to the P Zero Red soft around halfway through the 32-lap encounter. The alternative strategy was used extremely effectively as well, notably by DAMS driver Ayumu Iwasa, who started from last on the grid on the soft tyre but got into the lead before making his pit stop for the hard tyre on lap 19. The contained degradation on the soft was key to his strong performance, with Hitech driver Marcus Armstrong also using the alternative strategy to finish fifth from 13th on the grid. The hard tyre performed equally well, with one of the quickest drivers being Juri Vips (Hitech), who built up a commanding lead on the White compound following a brilliant getaway, before losing time with a slow pit stop.
- Victor Martins won the Formula 3 feature race for ART Grand Prix. He managed the sole nominated P Zero White hard compound well for the full 23-lap distance, overtaking polesitter Franco Colapinto (Van Amersfoort Racing) on lap 15. He finished 1.5 seconds ahead of Prema Racing’s Arthur Leclerc, the younger brother of Charles Leclerc and a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy, who demonstrated excellent pace to make up 11 places from 13th on the grid and finish in second place.