Pirelli data sees big drop in fastest lap times in F1 2017, more stats revealed
The 2017 changes to the regulations, as well as the Pirelli tyres promised of faster Formula 1 cars in the recent history, with fastest lap times predicted to go down considerably ahead of the season start.
Upon testing, the teams and drivers concurred with the predictions, but it was only in Australia that one finally saw the difference between the times from 2016 and 2017 season - especially with the introduction of the ultrasoft tyres.
Pirelli's data reveals, Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton's pole time from 2016 on the supersoft tyres 1.649s slower than the time set earlier this year on the ultrasoft. The race, meanwhile, had Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen lap 2.459s faster on soft in 2017, than Red Bull Racing's Daniel Ricciardo on supersoft in 2016.
The biggest difference in qualifying came at Spa-Francorchamps, with Hamilton clocking a time of 1m42.553s on ultrasoft, which was 4.191s faster than the time set by Nico Rosberg in the 2016 season on the supersoft.
In the race trim, the huge margin of difference also came at Spa, with Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel's fastest lap on ultrasoft being 5.006s faster than Hamilton's time in 2016, set on the medium tyres.
If we look at the difference with the tyres remaining the same for both years, Rosberg's time in China on the supersoft was slower by 3.724s than Hamilton's 2017 qualifying lap. The race saw Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat in Spain, lapping 3.355s slower than Hamilton this year on the soft.
In the more general data, the 2017 season saw a total of 435 overtakes made, as compared to 866, which came in the 2016 season. The highest came in Azerbaijan with 42 for a dry race and 31 in China for a wet race. The least was in Russia with just the one move under dry conditions.
The driver with the most overtakes in the year was Ricciardo with 43. He made 13 manoeuvres alone in the British GP - the most in a single race this season. Co-incidentally, Red Bull as a team with Max Verstappen's 22 had the highest number overtakes carried out.
At the opposite end, Hamilton and Verstappen were overtaken the least number of times with two, while Red Bull (nine for Ricciardo & two for Verstappen) and Ferrari (eight for Raikkonen & three for Vettel) were least overtaken teams on 11.
While McLaren's Fernando Alonso may have had some storming starts, but it was Williams' Lance Stroll who made 36 places in all, during the opening lap in the season.
In terms of tyres supplied, Pirelli says teams were given 38,788 units throughout the season - 33,520 were supplied during the race weekend, while 5,268 was given during testing. The total tyres used in a race weekend stands at 12,920 units.
There was also a huge talk about the increase in cornering speed, with drivers reveling the chance to go through a corner at a higher speed, thereby not only increasing the risk, but also adding to the driving spectacle.
The numbers from 2016 to 2017 in kilometers saw a staggering increase with Barcelona's Turn 3 and Turn 9 seeing a rise of 36km/hr and 30km/hr respectively. The Silverstone's Copse corner saw a rise of 30km/hr in speed, while Spa's Pouhon had 36km/hr increase.
Other general info-graphics from Pirelli include:
Pirelli's Mario Isola commented: "From a record-breaking season, we have collected some record-breaking numbers. Formula 1 introduced some radical new technical regulations this year, which resulted in the fastest cars ever seen in the history of the sport.
"So, our mission was to build the fastest-ever tyres, 25% wider than their predecessors to cope with the massively increased cornering speeds and energy loads, which nonetheless allowed the drivers to push hard from the start to the finish of every stint.
"We developed these tyres throughout 2016, despite not even seeing a 2017 car until the first pre-season test at Barcelona. Over the course of this year, pole position was on average 2.450 seconds faster than in 2016, and the fastest race lap was on average 2.968 seconds quicker than last year.
"In spite of forces that were sometimes up to 35-40% higher than 2016 through the quickest corners, our 2017 tyres achieved all the targets established at the beginning of the season, with an optimal level of reliability and consistency.
"Now we look forward to next season, with an even faster tyre introduced to the 2018 range and with every compound going a step softer, which should help contribute to even more speed and spectacle in the future."