No Real Surprise as Formula 1 Had Fewer Overtakes in 2020

Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen says it’s “basically impossible” to overtake in modern Formula 1. In 2020, his feeling was confirmed as there were, in fact, fewer overtakes than there were over the previous two years.

German publications Auto Motor und Sport and Auto Bild discovered that there were 32.6 and 38.9 overtakes per race on average in 2018 and 2019, respectively, that number dropped to just 31.4 passes per race in the 2020 season. Translated, that’s one on-track passes every three minutes or so of a typical race.

“We all know what the real problem is,” Verstappen said. “These cars are basically impossible to overtake with, at least on most of the tracks where we race.

“That’s why most drivers usually choose a strategy with one pit stop.”

Another problem, the Red Bull driver said, is that drivers need to nurse the health of their tires and even ease off before braking zones “because the tanks are not large enough to have enough fuel to attack to the end.”

“It seems to me that if you reduce the weight of the cars, the situation should improve,” Verstappen added.

However, the minimum weight limit in Formula 1 will only rise even further from in this year, when new rules designed to make for better racing will debut. Minimum weight of the cars is expected to be increased from 746 kg (1,644 lbs.) to 749 kg (1,651 lbs.)

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