2020 Hungarian GP: FP1 race simulation pace (‘Top’ teams)

Click on the image to view the “image” in high resolution. Since it is actually a vector, not a rasterized image, you can zoom in as much as you want.

The numbers inside the dots represent the lap in which that particular time was done. Drivers who did their laps later in the session will tend to have faster times. Keep that in mind when comparing the lap times done by different drivers.

If you do not see a driver in the plot, it is because he did not do a race simulation stint during the practice session.

If you see less laps than the number displayed above the driver’s name, then it is because the lap was slower than the maximum time represented in this chart.

Remember that sessions with rain or chaning conditions can give us unreliable and/or misleading data. Take the presented results with a grain of salt :).


  1. Sundaram Ramaswami

    1) What does the box denote? Also, what is the middle line within the box?
    2) Would it be okay to ask where do you get this data from? And how do you understand if a team has done a race simulation or not, considering fuel loads are unknown.

    • admin

      Hello Sundaram

      The box denotes the interquartile ranges. The lower side of the box represents the 25% quartile, while the upper side represents the 75% quartile. Points below the lower side of the box were among the 25% slowest laps done by that driver, while points over the box were among the 25% fastest done by that driver. Points inside the box are neither the slowest nor the fastest laps, but the more representative laps of that particular run.

      The line that divides the box represents the median. The median is calculated by arranging all the lap times from lower to higher, and then getting the middle point. This point represents a fairly “average” pace for that particular driver. I use the median for the FP2 analysis because the mean (also called average) is very sensitive to outliers, and can create a ton of variation in the results.

      Regarding the data, most of it can be taken from the FIA website. They post this information after every session.

      Finally, there is no real way to know if this is or not a race simulation stint. You just have to assume that it is based on the programs that each team runs every weekend. Normally they do their race stint simulations on FP2, but since they knew that FP2 was going to be wet, it was fair to assume that they would run their race simulations on FP1. You are correct about fuel loads though. There is no way to know how much fuel was in each car. Still, teams want to get accurate data from their race simulation stints, so there is no point in running on very low fuel loads since their data will not be representative of their actual race pace. Technically, a team could run with very little fuel to trick other teams, but then they are also not getting representative data for the race and could show up slightly unprepared on Sunday. Because of this, I tend to assume that most teams run on fairly equal levels of fuel.

      • Sundaram Ramaswami

        Thanks a lot for the detailed explanation. Appreciate it and love your work. Cheers!


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