Pre-season testing – Top speed (days 1 to 3)

Pre-season testing is already here (yei!). While much is kept under secret, including engine modes and fuel loads, we can still get some interesting information from the data. Today, we will take a look at the maximum speeds seen during the first 3 days of testing.


The speed seen here is not the one obtained at the speed trap, but the actual top speed seen at any point of the track. The idea here is not necessarily to see who has the fastest car, but just to get some insights into how the cars are responding so far.

Day 1

Carlos Sainz topped the charts with a top speed of 332 km/h, with Max Verstappen trailing the Spaniard by only 1 km/h. Daniel Ricciardo had the third fastest top speed in day 1, with a maximum speed of 325 km/h.

The majority of the drivers posted a top speed between 319 and 321 km per hour, with Esteban Ocon and Charles Leclerc having a top speed of less than 315 km/h.

Day 2

The second day of pre-season testing saw Romain Grosjean topping the maximum speed charts, with a top speed of 334 km/h. Sebastian Vettel wasn’t far behind the Frenchman, with a top speed of 332 km/h, while Lewis Hamilton had a top speed just 2 km/h shy of Vettel’s speed.

As seen in the previous day, most drivers had similar top speeds, this time between 319 and 325 km/h.

Day 3

The third day saw the fastest speeds of the 2020 pre-season testing. Daniil Kvyat topped the charts with a maximum speed of 338 km/h, with Sebastian Vettel once again taking second position with a top speed of 337 km/h.

Overall top speed (days 1 to 3)

After three days of testing, ynly six drivers had a top speed of over 330 km/h (Kvyat, Vettel, Grosjean, Sainz, Verstappen, and Hamilton). The fastest speed of testing seen so far was of 338 km/h done by Daniil Kvyat on the third day of testing. Not bad for a supposedly weak Honda power unit.

The three slowest drivers after three days were Esteban Ocon, Lando Norris and Pierre Gasly, managing to take their cars only to 319 km/h.

If we analyze the top speeds by team, we will see that Alpha Tauri has had the maximum speed over three days (338 km/h), with Ferrari just behind with a max speed of 337 km/h.

Haas, McLaren, Red Bull and Mercedes all managed to get a top speed of at least 330 km/h, while Alfa Romeo, Racing Point, Renault and Williams took the four bottom places in the top speed category.

Final remarks

This was just an exploratory analysis. I’d like to remind you that making conclusions from pre-season testing is very risky. There are just too many unknown variables. Remember last year when everybody thought that Ferrari was going to demolish the rest of the field? Yeah, that aged well didn’t it?

I hope that you have enjoyed this article. If you did, please share it with your friends and let me know what you think in the comments below.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend