2023 Hungarian Grand Prix – Preview

2023 Hungarian Grand Prix – Preview

We head to Hungary looking forward to tackling the double-header before the summer shutdown.
It has been an up-and-down first half of the year, but we can take several positives.
At Silverstone, we outscored our closest competitors.
We executed well on race day. We were able to race to the podium and extend our P2 advantage in the championship.
However, the order is fluctuating almost every weekend.
We need to keep adding performance if we are to close the gap to the front and fight for victories.
Several teams have made big gains recently.
This has brought some into the fight with us, especially McLaren.
It has been impressive and gives us encouragement that we can also continue to find gains.
We relish that challenge and will bring our own steps in due course.
The Hungaroring is a circuit that is quite different in nature to Silverstone.
It will be interesting to explore how our latest upgrades perform in the long-radius, slow-speed corners.
We have good memories from Hungary last year, with George’s first pole position in F1 and a double podium for the Team.
This race also marks a decade since Lewis’ first win with us, so it’s a circuit full of good memories.
Hopefully we can have another strong showing this time out.
We want to build on the positive momentum from Silverstone and take the fight to our rivals.

Fact File: Hungarian Grand Prix
This weekend sees the first ‘Alternative Tyre Allocation’ weekend trial, which you can read more about here.
The Hungarian Grand Prix weekend tends to be one of the hottest of the year, with an average air temperature of 25°C and a maximum of 33°C.
Correspondingly, track temperatures tend to also be high with an average of 36°C rising to a maximum of just over 50°C.
The amount of braking activity, with six events across the lap, coupled with the high ambient temperatures and the absence of long straights make the circuit exceptionally taxing on the brakes.
The low average speed at the Hungaroring also limits airflow, which makes it even more of a challenge to cool the brakes.
The circuit features 14 corners, six to the left and eight to the right.
Many of these follow one after another in quick succession, meaning a well-balanced car that can handle directional changes is important for lap time.
The Hungaroring has one of the lowest top speeds of the season at just over 310 km/h.
That is perhaps no surprise given the cars spend just over 10 seconds on a straight over the course of a fast lap, with the remaining time spent cornering.
Those track characteristics are also reflected in the full throttle percentage, which is just 60% and one of the lowest figures we see across the year.
Despite a relatively short start/finish straight, the distance from pole position to the braking zone for Turn 1 measures 444 metres, on the longer side compared to other venues we visit.
Given the prevalence of slower corners, good traction is important here. That is why this circuit puts the rear tyres under a lot of stress.
Last year saw George take his maiden F1 pole position, his lap time of 1:17.377 putting him on pole position for the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix.
The Team followed that up with a double podium in the race with Lewis taking second, with George third.
Lewis is the most successful driver in Hungarian Grand Prix history with a tally of eight victories.
Next on the list is Michael Schumacher with four wins to his name.

Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team

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