Poor Mercedes speeds, fast Mazepin, surprising Ferrari – Qatar GP summary

It was an interesting race and there is no shortage of interesting data on its course, especially on sector times and speed. What did they say about him in Alfie? I invite you to the summary of the Qatar Grand Prix!


Qatar GP Results 2021


Best lapy

This was obviously due to the strategy, but it is noteworthy that the last Nikita Mazepin had better race times than the sixth Lance Stroll and almost identical to Valtteri Bottas …

best lapy gp qatar 2021


In the last sector, the worst result was achieved by… Valtteri Bottas. You can also see how good Norris’ pace was in the ending thanks to the newer tires.

Qatar gp sectors best times 2021


And here’s a surprise – Lewis Hamilton had the second lowest speed at the measuring point. Older engine, no wing from Interlagos and there is an effect, although at the same time it was the only driver who did not use the slip stream and DRS at the same time.

Qatar gp speed 2021


The “air” was conducive to rapid changes. We had as many as 11 pit stops in less than 2.5 seconds. It is necessary to emphasize the ever-improving form of Ferrari in this aspect.

all pit stops gp qatar 2021


The most effective, but at the same time the most risky strategy was the one-stop strategy. It was successfully used by 8 drivers.

Qatar gp strategies 2021


All three mixtures were in use and you can see big differences in the individual runs.

GP Qatar tires 2021

Alpha sums up

“We had a better Sunday after a tough track weekend that was difficult for our car. Our pace in training and qualifying was marred by the damage we picked up during the session. Today we drove better, leaving Haas and Williams behind, and that was positive. Both drivers had a very good start, we passed successfully and in the end we were 3 seconds behind Tsunoda and Ricciardo. The 14th and 15th places are the maximum we could achieve. Now we have a week to regroup after three races in a row and prepare for the last two rounds of the season, ”said Frederic Vasseur, head of Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN.

Kimi Raikkonen finished in 14th place.

“I was surprised by the overtakes we were able to do and it was an interesting race. I didn’t expect much from him, maybe a fight with those we fought yesterday. However, we had a good start and then improved with the course of the competition. We had good fights and chased McLaren and AlphaTauri. I think we have done the maximum, commented the Finn.

Antonio Giovinazzi finished the position lower.

“We did everything we could and I don’t think more than 15th place is possible today. We had a great first lap, we got 4 places, and then we had fights on the track until the end of the race. Yesterday we had problems, but we knew that with a good race we could finish ahead of Haas and Williams. We decided to take two pit stops because we knew the degradation would be large and the curbs would not spare tires. In the end, we were faster than our rivals and given where we started from, we can be satisfied with our race, ”said the Italian.

From me

The debut at Losail was rather successful for us as fans. It was interesting, although it must be admitted that the penalties at the start and weaker qualifications, for example by Perez, meant that there were more emotions than usual. Once again we found out that when teams lack information, their qualifying pace can be very different from the racing pace. We have seen it with the examples of AlphaTauri, Alfa, Alpine and McLaren.

It also seemed that Verstappen was a little closer to Hamilton than he was in qualifying, though Lewis admitted he avoided curbs heavily and didn’t squeeze too hard. Nevertheless, Lewis has become a favorite for the title in two races, although I personally give Verstappen a 45% chance for the title.

Both of these drivers are second to none in Formula 1 right now, and it’s hard to expect anyone to join them under normal circumstances. Max had no problems with making up for the penalty at the start on Sunday and once again drove great. Both he and Lewis deserve the highest marks for the race, but Max’s missed flags cast a shadow on his weekend. Fact – he has lost nothing in the end, but in such a tight fight such a mistake can make the title decisive.

I will write about my assessment of Fernando Alonso and his race later, but the form of Alpine was a big surprise, and Marcin Budkowski has reasons to be pleased. In this team, he finally “can sell”. They have already had two podiums this season, they are fighting calmly and consistently – albeit very slowly – going up. This year, they will be fifth in the constructors’ standings, which is their absolute minimum.

It is not known whether Red Bull’s strategy saved Sergio Perez from a tire failure or he lost the podium because of it, but virtual neutralization certainly did not help. Judging by the race itself, Sergio did a good job, but qualifying …

The Stroll surprised me a lot in this race, but Aston Martin was one of those teams that had an unexpectedly good race pace. Lance can do such a race from time to time, but it is rather rare.

Had it not been for Lando Norris’ punctured tire, taking away his 4th or 5th place, Ferrari would not have been happy with this race. But double points and a further increase in their lead over McLaren save them the day, although yesterday’s pace was average. Nothing will save the podium in the Constructors’ Championship for McLaren, which is a disappointment given the beginning of the season. At the same time, Daniel Ricciardo began to be a shadow of himself again.

One minute before the race, it was going to be a great weekend for AlphaTauri. Then it all fell apart – there was no pace, no good strategy and no points.

In Alfie – as can be seen above – they are happy, but they probably have no reason. They had a terrible pace throughout the weekend, and although the drivers did not make any glaring mistakes, they will rather quickly forget about this weekend in Hinwil, just like in Grove. In Haasa, however, they were happy that they could finally fight someone.





This is how points in this classification changed throughout the season:

chart (1)

Penalty points:

Driver Points Nearest points expire … Reprimands
Sergio Perez 7 18/04/22 – 2 points
Sebastian Vettel 6 27/03/22 – 3 points 1
Nicholas Latifi 6 06/06/22 – 3 points
Nikita Mazepin 6 02/05/22 – 1 point
Yuki Tsunoda 6 18/04/22 – 1 point
Lando Norris 5
Valtteri Bottas 4 25/06/22 – 2 points 1
Lance Stroll 3 1
Kimi Raikkonen 3
Antonio Giovinazzi 3 04/07/22 – 2 points 1
Alexander Albon 2
Lewis Hamilton 2 18/07/22 – 2 points
Charles Leclerc 2 06/12/21 – 2 points
Max Verstappen 2 12/09/22 – 2 points
George Russell 1
Romain Grosjean 1
Pierre Gasly 1 09/05/22 – 1 point
Esteban Ocon 1 12/09/22 – 1 point 1

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About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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