What the teams can expect on the field

(Motorsport-Total.com) – This weekend, Formula 1 will make its debut in Miami. The fifth round of the 2022 Formula 1 season will be held at the temporary Miami International Autodrome. Miami is a whole new track and challenge for Formula 1, so what can we expect from it?

Formula 1 will make its debut at the Miami International Autodrome


How is the route?

The 5,412-mile course runs around Hard Rock Stadium in Miami and includes 19 corner kicks, twelve left-handed and seven right-handed. The layout is interesting because it has many slow corners as well as many very fast corners, but not many in the middle. There are also several long straights and three DRS zones.

As the slow turns are often followed by long straight stretches, traction at low speeds is important to get out of corners, and a compromise with car setup is required.

At the start of the lap you want a high ride with high downforce for the fast turns, on the long straight stretches a low pull set-up is advantageous and in the twisted sections you want a lower ride with high downforce. Therefore, teams need to weigh up where their priorities lie and what will give them the best lap time.

The sectors are all quite different. Sector one is dominated by the faster, sweeping corners, while the other sector contains several of the slower corners. Sector three is dominated by the long back straight and hairpins.

The track development on the new surface is likely to be high, so lap times will drop as the weekend progresses.

Surprisingly, the track has some similarities with circuits like Barcelona: The high-speed corners are at the beginning of the lap, which causes the tires to heat up, and at the end of the lap comes the twisted section where the hot tires suffer as there is nothing grabbed back.

However, overheating tires can be a little easier in Miami than in Barcelona due to the long straight sections.

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As this is a brand new track, no historical data is available, making it a complete step into the unknown for all teams and riders. In the run-up to the race weekend, the focus was on computer simulations and work in the driver-in-loop simulator.

In doing so, teams tried to use the limited information they had available to get as accurate a guide as possible to what to expect when they hit the pitch in Miami.

Does the course give a good run?

That there are three long straights with DRS zones, each ending in slow turns, promises good overtaking opportunities. Turn 11 and Turn 17 will probably be the most important areas you need to be aware of.

Also compared to permanent race tracks, the track is quite narrow in some places. While this makes it harder to fight wheels against wheels, it can prove important for strategy and the ability to find seats, as eliminated cars and debris are harder to remove. The probability of a safety car or virtual safety car is high.

There have already been encouraging signs that motorists are having an easier time following another car with the 2022 cars. This will come in handy on a narrow street circuit like Miami, where there are some fast and winding corner sections leading into the straight roads.

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The high temperatures also play an important role, as it becomes a challenge to keep the cars cool in traffic, which can mean that motorists have to back down to cool brakes and power units.

Expectations can be very different from reality, and wheel-to-wheel duels can not be simulated in preparation for the race. So we have to wait and see how things develop over the course of the race weekend.

What will the weather be like in Miami?

It is expected to get very hot in Miami, in the high 20s and even up to 30 degrees Celsius. And it’s just the air temperature, the runway temperatures get a lot higher. In addition, it is expected to be dry as it rarely rains in Miami in May. But the weather can always surprise you …

Interestingly, this weekend’s program means that the first training session is earlier than the start of the race. The second training, on the other hand, starts later, and both sessions do not correspond to the start time of the qualification. So teams will not have the opportunity to test the tires and the car under the same conditions as they will find in the qualification and the race.

The last part of the first training is closest to the running conditions and will therefore be particularly important for collecting useful data.

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