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2016 German Grand Prix - Qualifying

Hockenheim, July 30, 2016 – Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg has claimed pole position for the German Grand Prix. Conditions remained warm and dry throughout the session, with track temperatures of 38 degrees centigrade at the mid-point of qualifying. Rosberg’s pole time of 1m14.363s was more than two seconds faster than the 2014 pole (1m16.540s).

The Mercedes drivers were the only ones to get through Q1 using the soft tyre only, while all the others fitted the supersoft – reckoned to be around 1.5 seconds faster on the German track. From Q2 onwards, all the drivers utilised just the supersoft tyres in qualifying and this is the compound that the top 10 will start on tomorrow. Although yesterday 1.5 seconds separated the soft and supersoft compounds, the gap today seemed to be reduced at around 1 second.

Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director: “It looks like we might be seeing a mixture of two and three stop strategies tomorrow, with the running up to now showing that there could be a few quite different approaches to the race. A lot will obviously depend on the weather, which still appears to be changeable. Mercedes handed themselves a potential advantage by saving themselves an additional set of supersofts, so it will be interesting to see if they can capitalise upon that tomorrow.”

How the tyres behaved today: 
Medium: Not used during qualifying but might be used in the race as tactics will vary.
Soft: Used by the Mercedes drivers only to get through Q1: could be key to the race.
Supersoft: Around 1.5s faster than the soft on Friday; around 1 sec. gap seen in quali.

Possible race strategies and maximum laps*:
Pirelli recommends that the following numbers of laps are not exceeded on each compound:
Soft = 29 laps
Supersoft = 22 laps

On this basis, the optimal pit-stop strategies predicted by Pirelli are as follows:

Three-stopper: three stints on supersoft + one stint on soft  

Two-stopper: two stints on supersoft + one stint on soft (maximizing the stints on supersoft)

Two-stopper: two stints on supersoft + one stint on soft (maximizing the single stint on soft)
Different permutations of compound usage within each strategy are possible.
*This information is provided just as an indication for media, based on Pirelli data. It doesn’t form any type of guarantee for the teams, as each team is obviously responsible for choosing its own race strategy based on its own wear data.

Free Practice 3 – Top 3 Times
Rosberg                 1m15.738s          Supersoft New
Hamilton                1m15.795s          Supersoft New
Ricciardo                1m15.837s         Supersoft New

Qualifying Top 10
Rosberg                 1m14.363s          Supersoft New
Hamilton                1m14.470s         Supersoft New
Ricciardo                1m14.726s         Supersoft New
Verstappen            1m14.834s         Supersoft New
Raikkonen              1m15.142s          Supersoft New
Vettel                     1m15.315s           Supersoft New
Hulkenberg             1m15.510s          Supersoft New
Bottas                     1m15.530s         Supersoft New
Perez                       1m15.537s         Supersoft New
Massa                      1m15.615s          Supersoft New

Most laps by compound so far
Medium                Hulkenberg                   21
Soft                      Vettel                            33
Supersoft             Magnussen                   24

Best time by compound so far
Medium                 Hulkenberg                1m18.591s
Soft                       Hamilton                     1m15.243s
Supersoft              Rosberg                      1m14.363s

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