Strong F1 tyre management down to drivers, not car

Sebastian Vettel pulled off a risky one-stop strategy by completing a 36-lap stint on the soft compound tyre to finish seventh in Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix, getting the jump on a number of two-stopping rivals.

It came just one week after teammate Charles Leclerc was able to finish fourth in the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix thanks to a one-stop strategy despite fears of excessive tyre wear.

Ferrari has struggled for performance throughout this season with the SF1000 car, causing it to slump to fifth in the constructors’ standings after the opening six races. But Binotto said the impressive tyre management was a credit to Vettel and Leclerc, and not a particular strength of the car itself.

“I don’t think it is a strength of the car,” Binotto said. “If it’s any strength, it’s a strength of the drivers first, managing all the tyres, and the engineering group managing all the data. I think that’s it.”

Leclerc was also aiming to make a one-stop strategy work in Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix before an electrical issue on his power unit forced him to retire from the race.

The Monegasque felt he had made a step forward in his tyre management skills compared to last season.

“I believe that I did quite a lot of improvement compared to last year in tyre management,” Leclerc said….

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