An update from Free Practice at the Canadian Grand Prix as the Bulls take to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve sits in the middle of the St Lawrence River. The long, thin artificial island (built with spoil from the construction of the Montréal metro) informs the shape of the circuit: a line of straights interrupted by short, tight corners. There’s more performance to be gained from increasing end-of-straight speed than there is in carrying speed through the corners, and so the big wings of the maximum downforce setups seen in Monaco and Spain give way for something more like that seen in Baku: not quite the skinny wings of Monza but definitely close to the middle of the range. Traditionally, top speeds in Montréal have been in the 330-340kph bracket – about 60kph higher than Monaco.
What does carry over from the last race is the ubiquity of the concrete walls and the penalty for running off-line. There really isn’t any margin for error. The infamous Wall of Champions has the notoriety – but the first chicane tends to collect the greater number of scrapes.
On Friday morning the Bulls got the chance to take to the track in the RB15 for the first time. Free Practice One saw the sun shine on the track, as Max took P4 with a 1:13.755 after his 26 laps. Pierre finished the session in P13 posting a 1:14.570 from 27 laps.
The afternoon saw the Bulls back out on track with Pierre finishing FP2 in P12 with a 1:13.345, from 38 laps. Max wasn't far behind in P13, posting a 1:13.388 after his 22 laps.
Saturday morning saw the final practice session of the weekend take place. Max finished the session P5 with a 1:11.842 from 15 laps. Pierre was in P6 setting a time of 1:11.914 after 19 laps.