The 2019 Formula 1 United States GP according to Brembo


 An in-depth look at the braking systems on the Formula 1 single-seaters at the Circuit of the Americas


Formula 1 is back in the United States for the 19th race of the 2019 World Championship from November 1 to 3 at Circuit of the Americas. Located in the hills overlooking the center of Austin, Texas, this track was designed by Hermann Tilke according to recommendations by Kevin Schwantz.​


It was inaugurated in October 2012 and has since hosted seven Formula 1 GP races and just as many MotoGP competitions. ​

Compared to the motorcycles, the single-seaters complete the race 30 seconds sooner because they travel a good part of the corners at a faster speed and sometimes don't need to brake.

The Texas track stands out for its impressive uphill straightaway that leads to the first left-hand turn: the drivers don't see the corner until the very last second, so there is great risk of getting the braking point wrong.

A similar problem could occur at turn 11, but the opposite could happen on other points of the track.

The elevation gain between the lowest stretch of the track and the highest is 41 meters (135 feet). ​

According to Brembo technicians, who have ranked the 21 World Champion circuits, Circuit of the Americas presents a mid-level difficulty on the brakes. On a scale of 1 to 5, it earned a 3 on the difficulty index.​



Brake use during the GP

The Formula 1 drivers use their brakes on only 9 of the 20 corners, which is three less than the MotoGP riders. ​

The grip guaranteed by the four tires means the cars don't need to brake on turns 3, 6 and 16. ​

​To complete one lap on the Austin track, the brakes on each Formula 1 car are applied for 17 seconds​, compared to the 37 seconds the MotoGP bikes need. On average during the United States GP, the Formula 1 cars apply their brakes for 16 minutes, which is 19% of the overall duration of the race.


The average peak deceleration per lap is 3.8 G, but there are four corners where this gets up to at least 4.7 G. The energy dissipated in braking throughout the GP by one single-seater however, is high: 220 kWh, which is the same of the Bahrain GP. Instead the load applied to the brake pedal by each driver from the starting line to the checkered flag is not among the heaviest in the World Championship: 51.3 tons, which is a quarter less that of the Singapore GP. In other words, each driver is required to apply a force of about 0.546 tons (1,204 lbs) for every minute of driving. ​


The most challenging braking sections

Of the 10 braking sections on Circuit of the Americas, Brembo technicians have classified three as demanding on the brakes, one is medium difficulty and five are light. ​

The cars approach turn 12 after having traveled the long straightaway and taken advantage of the DRS system. The single seater speed loose almost 240 km/h (149 mph) in order to set the braking point up right. They go from 333 km/h (207 mph) to 94 km/h (58 mph) in just 2.52 seconds and 125 meters (410 feet). To perform like this, the drivers are subject to 5.8 G in deceleration and apply a load of 188 kg (414 lbs). on the brake pedal. ​

The speed lost in braking on the first corner is just below this, but since this stretch is uphill, it requires​ time to complete the operation: 2.35 seconds are needed to go from 319 km/h (198 mph) to 104 km/h (65 mph) in 118 meters (387 feet). The load on the brake pedal is 158 kg (348 lbs). and the deceleration is 5.2 G. ​

A little shorter but just as significant is the braking on turn 11: 295 km/h (183 mph) to 81 km/h (50 mph) in 2.62 seconds and 113 meters (371 feet). with an average deceleration of 5.2 G. Braking on the last corner requires 92 meters (302 feet). On the contrary, only 45 meters (148 feet). are needed for the small braking section at turn​ 8.


Brembo performance

Single-seaters with Brembo brakes have won the last six United States GP races contested on Circuit of the Americas. ​

More generally, Brembo brakes have been victorious at 23 GP races held in the United States, 13 of which were with Ferrari.