Galerie technique du Grand Prix du Canada

True to its reputation, the Canadian Grand Prix was rich in adventures, especially on the technical level, where the Red Bull excelled in an area that seemed to be an asset for Ferrari. Explanations, exclusive images in support.

WHY DID RED BULL TAKE IT?

On the banks of the Saint-Lawrence, Ferrari’s race was not a long calm river. The F1-75 was certainly competitive (as evidenced by Carlos Sainz’s fastest lap and his small deficit at the finish [0”993]), but it was Max Verstappen who won. The reasons for Red Bull’s sixth success (in as many races) are numerous, and their conjunction explains the 26e success of the Dutchman in Formula 1.

The leader of the provisional classification made his life easier, first of all excelling during qualifying in tricky conditions. Even devoid of novelties in Montreal (it had evolved a lot in Baku), the RB18 is fast, but Sergio Pérez put it in the wall on Saturday afternoon. Its leader, him, put it in pole position. A feat of which Carlos Sainz was not capable. Beaten by the inoxidable Fernando Alonso, the Spaniard probably does not have the top speed of Charles Leclerc.

Verstappen showed the same authority in the race, where he maintained his composure, resisting the attacks of his former team-mate for 16 laps. He made no mistakes and drove intelligently (taking care when exiting the corner before the first DRS detection point), controlling the event despite its many twists and turns (three neutralizations in total).

F1, F1 2022, Canada, Technical, Ferrari, Red Bull, Leclerc, Verstappen, porpoising, FIA

Then, the RB18 displayed qualities that we did not suspect of it. More than its top speed at the end of the straight (less decisive on a circuit where the straight sections are relatively short), it was its excellent traction when exiting corners that made the difference on Sunday, particularly in the hairpin of turn 10, where the Ferrari was clearly suffering:

“[La performance dans le] first sector was really crucial, and traction in turn 10 absolutely vitalexplains Christian Horner. Thanks to this, Carlos never got more than six tenths closer to Max. That said, the Ferrari was very good on the curbs. With three DRS detection zones, Carlos was still a threat.”

While it was thought that the F1-75 had better traction in slow corners (like in Monaco), this was not the case on the Gilles Villeneuve circuit. Leclerc complained several times on the radio about his car’s lack of grip in this hairpin. Could it be because the rain disrupted the preparation of the Scuderia, as in Emilia-Romagna, preventing it from finding the right settings? In any case, the new rear wing (supposed to move the support from the main plane to the upper flap, in order to increase the effect of the DRS tenfold) did not work miracles. Caught in a train of DRS, the Monegasque struggled to overtake and overcome opponents inherently slower than him.

Thirdly, finally, Red Bull once again took advantage of Scuderia missteps. Already devastating in Baku, the fragility of the Italian V6 forced Leclerc to use a fourth engine and suffer the associated penalty (a drop of ten places on the starting grid). It is still her who caused the abandonment of Mick Schumacher when he was in the points. In addition, operational errors (during tire changes, even in terms of strategy) complicated the task of the Maranello drivers. Even if it is far from being irreproachable in terms of reliability (with the breakdown of Pérez, it has four mechanical abandonments against three at the Prancing Horse), Red Bull manages the unexpected better.

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