Technical F1: The art of the pit-stop

The pit-stop or a pit stop, the expression is more of a team sport that is racing and in particular Formula 1. A total of sixteen people in charge of changing four tires, modify the incidence of the flaps of the front wing and clean up the pontoons of the car if it is necessary. And all of this can do it in less than two seconds.

The pit stops have been made since the start of the competition at the end of the TWENTIETH century. Well to refuel, change tires, pilot, or all at the same time, the mechanics have had an influence on the end result much greater than what you’re used to being recognised. The pit-stop is a dance, perfectly synchronized, in which the slightest mistake is paid for with several seconds of loss. Seconds, which are usually impossible to get back on the track.

This year, there are two teams dominated the rest: Mercedes and, especially, Williams. The team from Grove has led to the classification of pit stops in all races this season except two: Great Britain and Hungary, where Mercedes got the best time.

In any case, Williams has been the team -according to measurements official – fastest of the season, getting to change all four wheels in less than two seconds in the Grand Prix of Europe. Taking into account the best pit-stops of each race, the faster it is produced in the above-mentioned race in Baku (1.92 years seconds and the slowest in Monaco (to 2.43 seconds).

Great Premio Equipo Piloto Tiempo
Australia Williams Valtteri Bottas 2.35 s
Bahrein Williams Felipe Massa 2.27 s
China Williams Felipe Massa 2.10 s
Rusia Williams Felipe Massa 2.23 s
España Williams Felipe Massa 2.12 s
Mónaco Williams Valtteri Bottas 2.43 s
Canadá Williams Valtteri Bottas 2.11 s
Europa Williams Felipe Massa 1.92 s
Austria Williams Felipe Massa 2.16 s
Great Britain Mercedes Lewis Hamilton 2.33 s
Hungría Mercedes Nico Rosberg 2.15 s
Alemania Williams Felipe Massa 2.00 s

unfortunately for the mechanics, you tend to remember more the mistakes than the successes. Pilots that they are wrong, box, wheels, lost at the bottom of the garage or hoses that are clogged or broken, causing fire, the stops have always provided moments in which great results have been ruined by fata synchronization.

The evolution in the operations in the pit has been, as in almost all aspects of motorsports, extraordinary. The mechanics that before aflojaban the nuts by hammering, are now using pistols specifically designed to tighten nuts equally designed to perform its function effectively and promptly. The mechanics assigned to so decisive operation, train for hours to not miss the key moment, as well as to cope with the pressure of having in their hands -for a few seconds – the key to success or failure.