Abu Dhabi Overtaking - Something in the air?

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
I remember distinctly hearing when watching a GP2 Asia event at Abu Dhabi that there are engineers who believe it is difficult to overtake at Abu Dhabi because there is something in the air which means slipstreaming becomes a whole lot more difficult because the air isn't quite 'punctured' in the same way it is elsewhere.

Is there anyone who knows anything about this?
 

Fenderman

Rooters Reporter
Hmm. That's interesting. The only thing that comes to mind is the issue of atmospheric pressure. It's certainly the case that slipstreaming on circuits at high altitude is less effective due to the lower density of the air. Since Yas Marina isn't a high altitude circuit it must be some other factor the engineers were talking about but what that might be I can only guess. I am intrigued and will investigate!
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
Perhaps very fine sand, Fenders? Or maybe salt - is this a phenomenon seen at other coastal circuits?

I think Galahad might be your man for that one, but it does raise an interesting point. First, of course, it is necessary to define coastal. In the 2011 calendar, you have:
  • Monaco
  • Valencia
  • Singapore
  • Suzuka
  • Yeongam
  • Yas Marina
None of those, of course, famed for overtaking. We also have Montreal which is on a massive expanse of fresh water.

Maybe the coast really isn't the place for F1!
 

Slyboogy

World Champion
Contributor
I think Galahad might be your man for that one, but it does raise an interesting point. First, of course, it is necessary to define coastal. In the 2011 calendar, you have:
  • Monaco
  • Valencia
  • Singapore
  • Suzuka
  • Yeongam
  • Yas Marina
None of those, of course, famed for overtaking. We also have Montreal which is on a massive expanse of fresh water.

Maybe the coast really isn't the place for F1!

All of those tracks aren't really overtaking friendly though, maybe Yeongam but the second sector seems to seperate the cars.

But it is an interesting point nevertheless :)
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
All of those tracks aren't really overtaking friendly though, maybe Yeongam but the second sector seems to seperate the cars.

But why aren't they overtaking friendly? I mean, for example, when Valencia came onto the F1 calendar, everyone and their Dad said it was like Montreal. Those circuits can be gathered in three groups really:
  1. Tight street circuits (Monaco, Singapore)
  2. Fast corners but tight (Suzuka, Valencia)
  3. Three distinct sectors (Yeongam, Yas Marina)
I don't know, but it seems to me that all of those circuits are not necessarily similar!
 

Slyboogy

World Champion
Contributor
But why aren't they overtaking friendly? I mean, for example, when Valencia came onto the F1 calendar, everyone and their Dad said it was like Montreal. Those circuits can be gathered in three groups really:
  1. Tight street circuits (Monaco, Singapore)
  2. Fast corners but tight (Suzuka, Valencia)
  3. Three distinct sectors (Yeongam, Yas Marina)
I don't know, but it seems to me that all of those circuits are not necessarily similar!

Well my Dad and I never said it was like Montreal!

I think you hit the nail on the head there. The 'tightness' in my opinion, is what is creating the problems, the layout for Yas Marina is all wrong, Korea is a confusing one for me, but I think the last two sectors is what causes the problem.
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
I think you hit the nail on the head there. The 'tightness' in my opinion, is what is creating the problems, the layout for Yas Marina is all wrong, Korea is a confusing one for me, but I think the last two sectors is what causes the problem.

Could be the 'tightness', but then that would also usher in Albert Park, Montreal and even perhaps the Nurburgring or Monza.
 

Slyboogy

World Champion
Contributor
Could be the 'tightness', but then that would also usher in Albert Park, Montreal and even perhaps the Nurburgring or Monza.

Neither of those are known for overtaking either!

Apart from Montreal, for a track that has corners which are 80% chicanes actually puts on a good show!

Rain usually spices up Albert Park and Nurburgring along with several first corner incidents, the latter also has some amazing elevation. Plus they have a better layout aswell with some gravel traps punishing mistakes if a driver makes an error.
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
Just taking the dry races for this season, the overtaking averages are:

Coastal (Yeongam, Valencia, Suzuka, Singapore, Monte Carlo): 49
Non-Coastal: 66.9

To be honest I can't think of anything relating to the track location that would make a difference except possibly wind speed, but even then that effect would be minimal. The greater air density at sea level does make slipstreaming more effective, but then cars have to get close enough to slipstream each other in the first place.

Yas Marina strikes me as a layout as probably no better nor worse for overtaking than any of the others, but there have just been a couple of races where there hasn't been much. A sample of 2 really isn't much to go on.
 

RickD

Pole Sitter
Just taking the dry races for this season, the overtaking averages are:

Coastal (Yeongam, Valencia, Suzuka, Singapore, Monte Carlo): 49
Non-Coastal: 66.9

To be honest I can't think of anything relating to the track location that would make a difference except possibly wind speed, but even then that effect would be minimal. The greater air density at sea level does make slipstreaming more effective, but then cars have to get close enough to slipstream each other in the first place.

Yas Marina strikes me as a layout as probably no better nor worse for overtaking than any of the others, but there have just been a couple of races where there hasn't been much. A sample of 2 really isn't much to go on.
But Albert Park could be classed as coastal as well..
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
If we class Albert Park as coastal, the average for the coastal circuits drops to 45.7 and for the non-coastal rises to 71.9.

But there are lots of ways you could split the data to get a significant difference. The 'air' in the Far East seems more conducive to overtaking than that in the rest of the world, for example. My two pence is that it's a question of car/circuit interaction and little else.
 

tooncheese

Hans Heyer
Contributor
But Albert Park could be classed as coastal as well..

There is a large bay with a very small entrance, Albert Park is at the far side. Although it is Salt Water, the currents and winds can't reach it any easier than it can reach somewhere like Catalunya.
 
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