Pit Stop Strategy

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Pit Stop Strategy

Post  Ashley Rushworth on Mon Jan 24, 2011 9:10 pm

There are two main elements that are important when deciding on a pit stop strategy. Those main two elements are tyres and fuel load.

Sometimes, tyre consistency will dictate your pit strategy. For this reason, a tyre choice needs to be made at the start of a race meeting so that sets of tyres that you want to use during the race are not wasted in the practice or warm-up sessions. Always check the engineer's advice at the start of the weekend. The engineer (in the ‘engineers advice’ section) will tell you the approximate length a tyre will last.

In general, it is often advisable to stay out on the track longer than your competition. This is because you will be driving a fuel light car, where as your competitors will all be in freshly refuelled heavier cars, probably lapping something like 1.5s a lap slower.

However, there are exceptions to this rule. Always remember the distance the tyre is designed to last. Push the limits too much, and try and stop too late in the race, and your tyre will go pop.

Apply these rules depending on your qualifying position. For example; there is little point heavy fuelling your car so that you can stay out longer if you qualified on pole, your competition will simply overtake your heavier car at the start. Similarly, there is no point low fuelling a car if you start at the back of the grid. Yes, the car may be faster, but you'll probably be held up in traffic and loose the advantage.
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Ashley Rushworth
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