2020 Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix strategy guide

Formula One’s first two-day weekend takes place at one motor racing’s great venues: Imola, the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari, where an interesting race awaits.

The format change to expunge Friday practice from the schedule fulfils two aims. The first is to reduce the logistical burden of road travel between Portugal and Italy for back-to-back weekends, particularly with the background of COVID-19 restrictions.

The second reason has potentially far-reach consequences — the evaluation of the viability of a shortened format to ease the burden of individual races in exchange for cramming more events into a season.

Already the draft 2021 calendar is reportedly running at 23 events, including two of the previous forbidden triple-header rounds, which made an unwelcome but necessary return this year to account for time lost to lockdown.

Calendar permutation aside, the prospect of less practice time is a welcome one that promises to inject some variability into the form guide, if only a little.

With only 90 minutes to hone set-up less any time a team might be brave enough to sacrifice to testing updates, there’s less scope to perfect the package and more opportunity for mistakes to creep in.

It delivered a qualifying session that rewarded drivers willing to take significant risk, with Valtteri Bottas taking pole with a lap that left him shaking in the aftermath. Lewis Hamilton, for his part, conceded he just put together a poor lap.

THE GRID

PROVISIONAL STARTING GRID
1 Valtteri BOTTAS 1:13.609
2 Lewis HAMILTON 1:13.706
3 Max VERSTAPPEN 1:14.176
4 Pierre GASLY 1:14.502
5 Daniel RICCIARDO 1:14.520
6 Alex ALBON 1:14.572
7 Charles LECLERC 1:14.616
8 Daniil KVYAT 1:14.696
9 Lando NORRIS 1:14.814
10 Carlos SAINZ 1:14.911
11 Sergio PEREZ 1:15.061
12 Esteban OCON 1:15.201
13 George RUSSELL 1:15.323
14 Sebastian VETTEL 1:15.385
15 Lance STROLL 1:15.494
16 Romain GROSJEAN 1:15.918
17 Kevin MAGNUSSEN 1:15.939
18 Kimi RAIKKONEN 1:15.953
19 Nicholas LATIFI 1:15.987
20 Antonio GIOVINAZZI 1:16.208

AUTODROMO INTERNAZIONALE ENZO E DINO FERRARI

OVERVIEW

Laps: 63

Distance: 4.909 kilometres

Corners: 19

Lap record: N/A

Track record: 1:25.269 (Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes, 2020)

CIRCUIT

Lateral load: medium

Tyre stress: medium

Asphalt grip: TBC

Asphalt abrasion: TBC

SET-UP

Traction: low

Braking: medium

Downforce: medium

STRATEGY PARTICULARS

TACTICS

Safety car probability: N/A

Pit lane speed: 80 kilometres per hour

Pit lane length: 547 metres (approx.)

Pit lane time loss: TBC

Fuel consumption: 1.75 kilograms per lap

TYRES

Tyres: C2 (hard), C3 (medium), C4 (soft)

Estimated tyre delta

Hard–medium: 0.5 seconds

Medium–soft: 0.6 seconds

STRATEGY FORECAST

POSSIBLE STRATEGIES (63 laps)
  • soft to lap 28–30, medium to flag;
  • soft to lap 24–47, hard to flag;
  • medium to lap 26–35, hard to flag; or
  • soft to lap 18, medium to lap 45, soft to flag.