2023 Brazilian Grand Prix: Sunday Tyre Analysis – Max Verstappen has won the third edition of the Sao Paulo Grand Prix. The result was never really in any doubt, even if second placed Lando Norris finished within ten seconds of the winner and claimed the extra point for the race fastest lap, showing that McLaren has made great progress. Fernando Alonso stood on the third step of the podium with a display in the closing laps that had the crowd cheering on its feet, as he fought an incredible duel with Sergio Perez. It was a photo finish, the two men separated by just 53 thousandths of a second at the chequered flag.
This was Max’s 52nd career win and his 17th of the season, thus setting a new record, with what is at the moment, an 85% success rate, beating the previous 75% record set by Alberto Ascari in 1952.
For the start, 19 drivers had chosen the Soft with seven of them going for a new set of C4. Sargeant was the only driver to start on the Medium. For the restart, after the first lap accident, which involved Albon, Magnussen, Piastri, Ricciardo and Hulkenberg, two drivers decided to change their approach to the race: Piastri went from Soft to Medium while Sargeant went in the opposite direction.
Of the 17 drivers who lined up for the second start, only Ocon made three stops, using three sets of C4 and one of C3. Everyone else went for the two-stop, with 15 drivers following the sequence C4-C3-C4, while Piastri used two sets of Soft after his first stint on the Medium.
Norris did the longest stint on the Medium (32 laps), and Piastri extended a Soft stint the most, going for 28 laps.
One interesting fact: the red flag on lap 3 actually allowed two drivers – Sargeant and Hulkenberg – to complete the entire race using only the Soft compound.
Mario Isola – Pirelli Motorsport Director
“It was an action packed race, even before the start! In the end, the dominant force this season, Max Verstappen, took the win, but there was plenty of excitement, and how! Norris played his part, showing great pace so that he finished not that far behind the Red Bull driver and then Alonso and Perez had the crowd going wild with their duel in the closing stages, while there were also plenty of other interesting battles over the course of the race. All this on a track that is very hard on tyres, with significant degradation, so that the drivers had to work hard to manage them, but it certainly didn’t stop them overtaking their rivals even towards the end of the stints.
Strategy and tyre usage confirmed our predictions going into the race. The two-stop was the preferred choice of the vast majority of drivers, while the Soft was the tyre that saw the most use. In very similar weather to what we had in yesterday’s Sprint, the C4, although requiring careful management, proved that, overall it performed better than the C3, especially because it ensured better grip and slid less. Almost everyone used the Medium in the middle stint, with lap numbers absolutely similar to those run on the Softs.”
2023 Brazilian Grand Prix: Sunday Tyre Analysis