The 2019 Formula 1 Spanish GP according to Brembo


 An in-depth look at the braking systems on the Formula 1 single-seaters at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya


From May 10 to 12, the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya will host the 5th race of the 2019 World Formula 1 Championship. Located in Montmeló, the circuit was inaugurated on September 10, 1991 and 19 days later it hosted its first Formula 1 Grand Prix. ​

Just recently, in February and March, the Catalunya track was stage to eight days of testing during which the single-seaters drove for a total of more than 40,000 km (25,000 miles). It was the perfect bench test for the state-of-the-art Brembo braking systems.​

The strong winds, which forced Fernando Alonso off track during testing in 2015, combined with the 1,047 meters (0.65 miles) main straightaway and other smaller straights allow for efficient thermal dissipation between one braking section and another. ​
According to Brembo technicians, who classified the 21 tracks in the World Championship, the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya falls into the category of circuits presenting medium difficulty for the brakes. On a scale of 1 to 5, it earned a 3 on the difficulty index.​



The demand on the brakes during the GP

Although the lap time is 13 seconds less than the track in Sochi, the difference in the use of the brakes comes to merely half a second: the cars brake for 15 seconds every lap of the Russian GP, while at the Spanish GP they brake for 14 and a half seconds. The overall time spent braking on this circuit totals 19 %, the same percentage recorded at other five GPs.​

The average peak deceleration is 4 G, the same value of Australian GP: during the entire GP, each single-seater is expected to dissipate 216 kWh. ​

From the starting line to the checkered flag, the Brembo technicians forecast that each driver will face about 530 braking sections, exerting a total force on the pedal of approximately 52 tons. ​

In other words, each driver will apply a load of more than 550 kg (1,213 lbs) every minute.​


The most demanding braking sections

Of the eight braking sections at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, two are classified as demanding on the brakes, three are of medium difficulty and three are light. Different from all the other tracks, there is not even one corner in which the brakes are used for less than a second. ​

The most demanding braking section is at turn 10: the single-seaters go from 319 km/h (198 mph) to 79 km/h (49 mph) by braking for 2.9 seconds while traveling 129 meters (423 feet). To do so, the drivers are required to apply a load of 196 kg (432 lbs) on the brake pedal and undergo 5.2 G in deceleration. 
Lower amount of deceleration is registered at the first corner. The single-seaters arrive at the corner going 325 km/h (202 mph) and brake for just 2.01 seconds while traveling about 119 meters (390 feet). Another critical braking section is at turn 4 because in just 105 meters (344 feet), the single-seaters have to go from 299 km/h (186 mph) to just over 160 km/h (99 mph). ​



Brembo performance

More than half of the Spanish GP races (21 of 39) in which they took part were won by single-seaters equipped with Brembo brakes. Ten of these went to Ferrari, which has been victorious eight times since 1996 on the Barcelona track. ​                       

In the 2016 however, first place went to Max Verstappen with Red Bull, making him the first 18-year-old to ever win a GP. ​