Welcome back Canada, we missed your braking points


 Crucial stages for the Brembo calipers in Formula 1 and the latest innovations for track day enthusiasts

​​​After missing two editions because of the pandemic, Formula 1 returns to Canada on the circuit named after Gilles Villeneuve, with this year the 40th anniversary of his death. The track is on Notre-Dame Island which was artificially made in 1965 on the Saint Lawrence River when the Montreal underground railway was being built. 

According to Brembo engineers, it is one of the most demanding circuits for brakes. On a scale of 1 to 5, it is rated 4 on the difficulty index, the same as the Baku track which was the race venue a week ago. The braking points which are very sharp and close together subject the brake system to a lot of stress with the brake discs and pads reaching very high temperatures which are however reduced by a number of long straight sections which give the components a rest and allow them to cool down. ​

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Formula 1 calipers designed by Brembo​​​​ ​​


The Brembo group makes aluminum alloy brake calipers for all the 2022 World Championship teams. Brembo introduced monobloc calipers into racing in the second half of the 1980s on the Ferrari F187/88C driven by Michele Alboreto and Gerhard Berger. 

The Brembo 4-piston radial mount calipers which consist of two mechanically coupled cast aluminum semi-calipers, on the other hand, date back to 1982. Initially, these were only used by Ferrari and then extended to the other teams. However, in modern times, the development of the braking system takes place independently and separately for each team to preserve industrial secrets.



The Pista (track) caliper by name and by nature​​​​​​​

Inspired by 4 decades of experience in racing and the increasing popularity of track days when the owners of high performance vehicles take to the racing tracks, Brembo has unveiled a range of uniquely designed forged calipers. With the Pista/FF range of calipers, Brembo offers a high performing and easy to install solution which guarantees the best braking response. 

It comes in two versions: a 6-piston caliper (FF6) and a 4-piston caliper (FF4). Both have internal ducts that the brake fluid passes through which have been carefully studied to guarantee maximum bleedability of the system. They also have a rapid release system for replacing the pads so that they can be changed without removing the caliper. 

Have a look at the characteristics of the Pista calipers.​




Five points of deceleration​

The Formula 1 drivers use their brakes only 7 times on the Gilles Villeneuve Circuit although they need to use them on all the first three corners. The brake system is used for 13 seconds per lap which amounts to 18% of the entire Grand Prix. There are a total of 5 points on the track where maximum deceleration reaches 4.8G. 

From the starting line to the checkered flag, each driver exerts a total load of over 67.5 metric tons on the brake pedal. On 5 corners, the load reaches 150 kg (330 lb) and on another 137 kg (302 lb). However, the braking distances are not excessive: 3 are more than 100 meters (328 feet) long but none reach 110 meters (360 feet). ​


148 kg (326.2 lb) for a braking point​​

Of the 7 braking points in the Canadian GP, 6 are classified as very demanding on the brakes and the remaining one, corner 2, is light. 

The hardest one is on corner 10 because it is the only one where the drivers drop 221 km/h (137.3 mph) in one braking episode: they go from 284 km/h (176.4 mph) to 63 km/h (39.1 mph) in 2.47 seconds while covering a distance of 101 meters (331 feet) with a load of 148 kg (326.2 lb) applied to the pedal.​



And what about the video games?​


Unlike the drivers, Formula 1 video game enthusiasts have never stopped driving at Montreal over the last 3 years and are therefore less out of practice. To hard brake as well as possible on the 10th corner, you have to move onto the left of the track. Brake at the 100 m sign and move into 2nd gear trying to hit the apex where the curb starts without going up onto it. Then run wide but be careful because as you come out of the corner, the asphalt bends to the right.​