The soaked Turkish GP produced a thrilling race for the fans. The race was about making the right strategic calls with tire temperature and grip being a wild card. Because of the heavy rains, most drivers opted to start the race on full wets.
The engineers at Ferrari said, “Usually the Extreme Wet tyres are good to navigate through puddles, but as soon as the heavy water clears from the racing line the Intermediate tyres are faster and they have a much bigger operating window.”
Usually, the norm in F1 is that the leading driver gets the option to pit ahead of his teammate. At the start, Vettel was quick off the line and made up 9 places to move to P3 mid-way through the first lap!
Charles, starting from the dirtier side of the track, languished at P14. So why did the Ferrari engineers opt to pit Leclerc, who was trailing Vettel, first?
A Ferrari insider has justified this by saying, “Competitors with clear track ahead have the benefit of good visibility and can get into a rhythm more easily, so can react to what others do.
“Those who are behind slower cars, with poor visibility, might consider taking a risk if it means they might have a clear track ahead after a pit stop. That’s why Charles was the first to stop to switch to Inters at the end of Lap 6.”
Charles Leclerc came out behind Ocon at P19 after the pit stop. On a fresh set of intermediate tires, he found excellent pace and overtook his way through the field. The other teams followed suit and most of the drivers pitted for inters, including his teammate.
Vettel stole the final podium place from Leclerc at the last corner of the race! While trying to overtake Perez for P2, Leclerc suffered a spin, basically gifting Seb the opportunity to move up.
Though Leclerc was furious at the end with himself, it made no difference to Ferrari’s overall result. Ferrari had their best points finish of this season at the 2020 Turkish GP. They added 27 points to their tally; the highest of the season for them.
It was a significant result for the Prancing Stallion, considering the fact that they had another poor outing in qualifying. They will hope to carry this momentum with them to Bahrain and finish the season on a higher note.