F1: Drivers struggled for grip on still green Miami asphalt

–by Mark Cipolloni–

Formula 1 drivers struggled to find grip on the newly resurfaced Miami GP circuit Friday.

A new asphalt mix was used as directed by Tilke company.

However, the asphalt has no rubber down on it and construction vehicles have been riding it under the hot Miami sun.

Despite the asphalt still being green, Max Verstappen topped FP2 on Friday afternoon with a lap record. His 1m27.930s effort beat Charles Leclerc’s 2022 pole time by 1.134s with even more speed to come in qualifying today.

Sergio Perez of Mexico driving the (11) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB19 on track during practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Miami at Miami International Autodrome on May 05, 2023 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

“The conditions out there are very low grip, especially in FP1,” said Sergio Perez.

Drivers said going off-line gave them little grip.

Is that supposed to be a surprise or something? They say the same thing on Friday’s about other street circuits, as well as Mexico City.

IndyCar should be racing at all the North American F1 races as a Saturday support race. This would lay down a lot of rubber for the F1 cars.

“It can be really difficult to race because you can’t drive off-line,” said George Russell.

“You’ve seen with a few people, myself included, you put one wheel off and there’s no grip whatsoever.”

“The grip is really quite low on this new asphalt,” said Lewis Hamilton.

“It’s interesting to see some of the offs. It is slippery, particularly for the rear end.

“A lot of sliding for a lot of people and including me, and so lots of overheating of the tires.

“We’re just trying to find that balance that keeps the tires somehow in the right spot, but they’re generally always over the peak of the temperatures.”

Lewis Hamilton 2023 Miami Grand Prix, Friday – LAT Images for Mercedes. Note the graining on the inside of his right-front tire.


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