F1 2021
Round 10

#BritishGP Race Setup #F1

gb Silverstone

F1 returns to speedy Silverstone this weekend - a team, fan and Grandma favourite. The British circuit was another track that saw multiple grand prix action in 2021, with the #BritishGP and #F170 taking their place on the calendar in British Summertime.

#BritishGP Race Setup #F1

Whilst the British Grand Prix provided a high-tension race to the flag, with Max chasing down a three-wheeled Hamilton on the final lap, it was the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix the following weekend that saw Honda power come out on top for the first time in 2020.

The home of Grand Prix racing since 1950, the fast-flowing Silverstone circuit has shown no signs of slowing down with age over the years! With some of the fastest corners and highest average lap speeds we see all season, the power unit once again plays an important part of the weekend. Our last home race for our Milton Keynes outfit - let's make it a special one.

British Grand Prix, New Weekend Format
British Grand Prix, New Weekend Format

Toyoharu Tanabe
Toyoharu Tanabe
Honda Racing F1
After a run of excellent results in recent races, we now come to the British Grand Prix, traditionally one of the highlights of the season. After two rounds at Red Bull’s own track in Austria, this is another home race, with Silverstone just a short drive from Red Bull Racing’s factory and our own facility in Milton Keynes. 
For the first time in the history of Formula 1, we will have a Sprint race on Saturday which will decide the grid for Sunday’s Grand Prix. It means that we at Honda  and all the teams effectively have to decide on set-up for PU and chassis, during just the one free practice session on Friday morning, before normal qualifying that same afternoon. This is a great challenge for the engineers and the accuracy of the simulation we have done prior to this weekend will take on even more importance than usual and we are keen to see how well we have prepared for this. This will be a tough weekend from many aspects, but we hope to keep the momentum of the last few races going in this important home weekend for us.

Max Verstappen
Max Verstappen 33
Red Bull Racing
Having fans back will really make the difference at Silverstone and the British crowd love motorsport in general which means it is a special place to be. Last year we did two races with no crowds and the atmosphere was missing, it’s of course still an amazing track, but to have the fans back again is going to make it even better and even though I know they will be supporting the British drivers I love to see the passion that they have for all of us. I just hope that the race is going to be exciting for them too.

We’ve started the season off really well and of course I’m very happy about that, but we have to keep on pushing, we can’t just be thinking about our results so far. It’s going to be really tight and a challenge for the rest of the year but that is what makes it exciting. We were for sure ahead in Austria and our car was very good there but in France we only won with a few laps to go, so the championship is very close and maybe even closer than the points show at the moment. There are some tough tracks coming up where Mercedes may have the edge on us but we have a great Team and we are doing everything we can to try and stay ahead.

I'm very open about trying the sprint races and I quite like that we have a bit less practice before we head into qualifying, but let’s just wait, it’s difficult to say anything about it until we’ve tested it this weekend. Every race you take risks but controlled risks, especially when you are fighting for a championship, but this one race isn’t going to define the end result.

Sergio Perez
Sergio Perez 11
Red Bull Racing
Obviously it wasn’t my day, I have learnt from what happened and I have taken the positives away from the race. We have to keep pushing and I am now focussing on this weekend, looking ahead, I can’t wait to get back on track at Silverstone. I am very excited to see all the fans back at the track too, the atmosphere is always electric at Silverstone. Hopefully lots of the Team’s family can come and watch the race too, they are all in for a good race weekend.

I'm feeling positive and pumped up for this weekend, hopefully we can get onto the podium again. It will be interesting to see the new race format for Formula One too. As a Team we have put in a lot of effort to understand the new race format, a lot of preparation and practice has gone into this weekend. It will be very different for everyone, it’s definitely exciting and I hope that the hard work pays off.

Yes, I believe so, and I saw Mercedes talk about upgrades so I’m sure they will be very strong this weekend. We will of course try our hardest as well and hopefully we will be able to come back up on top. Let’s see what happens!

Pierre Gasly
Pierre Gasly 10
Scuderia AlphaTauri
Reflecting on the triple-header, Qualifying went well at all three races and I managed to get into Q3 every time. So, Saturday’s performances were always excellent and I particularly enjoyed having a good race in France in front of a home crowd. The second race in Austria also ended well, even if it hadn’t been easy, so we were always in the game. On the downside, the first Austrian race ended immediately for me, but overall we’re doing a good job as a team, the car is working well and everything seems to be going in the right direction, so I hope that will continue at Silverstone.
The biggest change this weekend will be the race on Saturday, which means we only get one free practice session to set up the car before Qualifying. That’s a major change, so it will be even more important than usual to be very well prepared before going out on track for the first time. We will need to have a good baseline in terms of car set-up right from the start. The new format means how the car works in race trim takes on greater importance and we know this is where, maybe, we have a bit more work to do compared to how the car has been performing in Qualifying. I think generally that is because we over-perform in Qualifying, doing better than some other teams that struggle a bit with Quali and then, in the race, we are more or less where we ought to be. But overall, it should be fine, because we saw in Austria, running a different strategy, we finished four or five seconds off the top five. So, even if we have a bit more work to do for the race, we are nevertheless in the mix, which is definitely positive. We’ve worked a lot with the engineers, and I’ve been in the simulator, looking at all the possible scenarios for the new format with the Sprint Qualifying race. It should be good fun. We’ve also got new tyres from Pirelli. It’s been done mainly for safety and from what I experienced, trying them in Austria, I think they will feel pretty similar.
I love Silverstone, it’s one of my favourite tracks, especially the run through Maggots and Becketts, which is one of the most exciting sequences of the season. Although overtaking is meant to be difficult at Silverstone, it is possible and I managed some good passes last year, having some enjoyable fights including passing Seb (Vettel) round the outside at the right hander before the chicane.
I enjoyed racing in front of the fans in Austria and for Silverstone they’re announcing a full capacity crowd, the atmosphere should be great and I’m looking forward to it.

Yuki Tsunoda
Yuki Tsunoda 22
Scuderia AlphaTauri
Looking back at the triple-header in France and Austria, there were some negatives but also some positives. The negatives were obviously a big mistake in Qualifying in France and then in Austria, crossing the pit lane entry white line. I’d say the biggest positive was that from the first week in Austria, I changed my approach to the whole race week. Up until then, I tended to always push as soon as I felt confident or just after making a change to the car set-up. That approach had worked for me in the other formulas up to Formula 2, but it doesn’t work, or at least it involves a lot of risk when you try it in Formula 1. I realised that and changed to moving forward step by step, building up my confidence during the race week through free practice, up until Qualifying and from then on I try to push. That worked well and I also changed the way I worked with the engineers in meetings and how I warmed up before getting in the car. It was a step forward and we found a lot of good ways to work from now on. In Qualifying for the second Austrian race, I got my best result of the year and the way I managed getting through the three sessions was really good, especially as I had lost a bit of confidence after I had a big snap in the car in FP3. So, I was pleased with that.
After the last race, I got some more track time, testing the Pirelli tyres at the Red Bull Ring and as a rookie, the more time you get in the car, the better it is. It was interesting work. Now we come to Silverstone and I have good memories from last year, when I came third in the Formula 2 Feature Race and, like the Red Bull Ring, it is a track that I have driven at quite a lot, going back to when I was in F3. That’s all positive, but the downside at Silverstone, given I have never driven a Formula 1 car there before, is that we only have one free practice session before Qualifying, as this weekend we try the Sprint Qualifying Race on Saturday. It means that the new approach I started to use in Austria will not work so well this time. I expect that having to perform well in Qualifying immediately after FP1 is going to be tough. It will be quite difficult, but I will still try and speed up step-by-step again, like in Austria. But the sprint race is something new for everyone. We must also think that we can make set-up changes between FP1 and Qualifying, but after that we can’t really change anything. I think it is going to be quite a challenging week for everyone, but I will just focus on myself and on being as well prepared as possible.
I am looking forward to experiencing Silverstone in a Formula 1 car, with all its high speed corners and although, as I said, the lack of free practice is going to be a challenge, I am feeling fairly confident about the weekend as I have some experience of the track from previous years, so let’s see what happens. I am particularly looking forward to seeing what the Maggots-Becketts- Chapel corners are like in an F1 car.

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