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Tyre wear management in F1 2019 is just as crucial as in the real life sport. Real life Formula 1 racing has become more and more about preserving your tyres. The quickest strategy across a 100% race is normally to make as few pit stops as possible, hence the reason that tyre wear and tyre management is so crucial.
An average pit stop around an F1 circuit costs you roughly 20-25 seconds. So if you can manage your tyres across a stint without losing this much time, the strategy becomes beneficial.
This is somewhat replicated in the F1 2019 game as well. If you drive too hard on a set of tyres you may be quicker than the AI, but you will almost certainly need to pit earlier. As most races in F1 2019 are either a 1 stop or 2 stop race, you are already pushing your tyres to their limits on each stint. If you push even harder, or race flat out you may be required to pit again losing you around 20 seconds.
Normally the pay off between going a few tenths faster each lap isn’t worth the 20 second hit you need to take to change your tyres.
If you are struggling to keep your tyre wear down there are a few techniques you can employ. We’ve detailed 5 easy tips below to help you manage your tyres better throughout a weekend.
One of the first elements to look at addressing if you are finding increased tyre wear is your car setup. Setting up your car correctly across a race weekend can help you negate some tyre wear, without adjusting your driving style and speed.
If you feel you can’t afford to lose any extra time by driving more cautiously, ensuring your car is setup to look after your tyres could help.
Your setup is crucial to how your car behaves on your tyres, and can be the most important factor when it comes to tyre wear. Almost every element of your car setup in F1 2019 will affect your tyre wear, however there are a few options which directly affect it.
Your suspension geometry setup directly affects how much of your tyre is in contact with the road and how your tyres wear. The camber and toe settings alter the angle at which your tyres sit in relation to your car.
Camber dictates the angle to which the top of the tyre points in to the car.
Toe dictates the angle to which the front of the tyres point out from the car.
The lower your camber angle is, the more of your tyre is in contact with the road. This is turn gives you more grip throughout a circuit, but will cause increased tyre temperatures. This increase in tyre temperatures means your tyres will wear out quicker. Setting the camber to a more extreme angle will reduce your contact patch with the road and in turn give you slower tyre wear, but less overall grip.
Your toe angle essentially points the front of the tyres away from the center of the car. This gives you more turn in to corners and front end responsiveness. However as your tyres aren’t pointing straight they will rub on the road more than normal and once again increase your tyre wear.
Other elements of your setup also affect your tyre wear such as your differential setup and your tyre pressures. Your differential affects how easily your rear wheels will spin, and we talk about this further on in this guide.
Tyre pressures give you a direct correlation to how much rubber is touching the road and how much grip you will have. The higher you set your tyre pressures, the quicker your tyres will heat up. This is bad for tyre wear. So if you find your tyres overheating you could lower your tyre pressures by one or two notches. This will lower the heat generated and also give you more traction out of corners. Both of these will aid your tyre management.
If you are using a setup designed for ultimate speed in time trial mode you will almost always find tyre wear in a grand prix weekend is atrocious.
This is because to get the quickest times, you generally set the car up with minimum camber and maximum toe. This will help across a single lap by generating the highest amounts of grip and responsiveness. Perfect for a quick lap. However this in turn generates the highest amount of heat and tyre wear you possibly can during a race environment.
Be sure when choosing your setup to take the above in to consideration and make adjustments and compromises where necessary. Remember, the fastest setup will generally not be the best for your tyre management in F1 2019.
For more setup tips, read our complete F1 2019 setup guide.
Leading on from the point above, the only way you will be able to test your tyre wear is to practice. Utilise as many of the 3 practice sessions you need to across a weekend to test different setups and how heavily they affect your tyre wear and lap times.
There is a specifically designed practice programme in F1 2019 career mode to help show you your tyre wear. Using this practice programme will give you a live on screen graphic showing you where your are heavy on your tyre wear and wear to improve. At the end of the programme it will also give you a detailed overview of your wear. This overview includes your average wear percentage and expected tyre life. Pay attention to both of these as it can predict if you are going to run out of tyre life during a grand prix race.
The great thing about the tyre management practice programme is that you can run it as many times as you want. You can completely adjust your setup and run the practice programme multiple times to compare results. Ultimately you want to be able to consistently put in decent lap times, as well as keeping your tyre wear under the guide line within the practice programme. If you can achieve both of these things you should be on to a decent setup for the race.
Every track throughout the F1 calendar is labelled as either front limited or rear limited. This is referring to the front and rear tyres and which will wear out first. If a track is known to be rear limited, it means your rear tyres will wear out before your front tyres do. This generally means you can run slightly more aggressive setup on the front end, whilst looking to manage your rear tyres.
Tracks which are rear limited are generally punishing on your rear tyres because of excess wheel spin exiting corners. If you can work on managing your wheel spin coming out of corners you will do wonders for managing your rear tyre wear.
This is especially crucial around corners where you are travelling slowly, and accelerating hard on the exit. These are renowned for making your rear wheels spin up and reducing your wear level.
There are numerous ways you can limit your wheel spin from setup options to driving style tweaks.
In terms of your setup, you can lower the on-throttle differential to limit wheel spin and you can decrease your rear tyre pressures to give you more grip exiting corners. Adjusting your driving style will also help, and you can do so by being more careful on the throttle when you exit the corner. Lighter throttle inputs will help stop your rears from spinning.
If you find a few corners where you still wheel spin no matter what you do, try short shifting. Short shifting is the technique of changing gear earlier than you normally would when exiting a corner. By doing this you will be revving the engine less and putting less power and torque through your rear wheels.
Your on-throttle differential has been touched on already in this article, and is a major factor for how your rear wheels behave in F1 2019. Locking your differential will give you more ultimate drive out of corners but is more likely to spin up your tyres.
If you are struggling with wheel spin out of slow corners we would always recommend lowering your on-throttle differential. This will allow each rear wheel to spin more at their own rate and you will be less likely to spin a wheel or brake traction.
The great thing about the on-throttle differential is that you can adjust it whenever you want throughout a race. You can adjust it in your MFD screen. This allows you to change it for specific corners then change it back once you have navigated that particular tricky corner.
We would recommend playing with this setting throughout your practice sessions, and get used to adjusting it on the fly. Simply by lowering it 10-20% on the approach to a slow corner, then increasing it back up once you have exited the corner can make such as difference across a race.
Front limited tracks will put the majority of tyre wear on your front two tyres. This is normally associated with tracks that are made up of fast long corners. This will put excess pressure on either your front left or front right tyre. Tracks such as China are notorious for this with its sweeping fast corners.
Managing the speed and angle you taker around these corners is crucial to limit front tyre wear. Ultimately you want to be taking the cleanest, shortest line around these long corners. Limiting your steering input is important, as the more you turn your steering wheel, the more pressure you put on your outside front tyre.
This technique can be hard to do on some long corners, as you may already be taking the best racing line. If you are already taking the best line there isn’t always a way you can decrease your steering input. Instead you can try to take the corner at a slower speed. This isn’t always ideal as you may start losing time around long corners. However if the pay off is that you can run 2 or 3 laps longer on a set of tyres, this may give you an advantage over a quicker opponent.
Implementing all of the above techniques can be the difference between a 2 or 3 stop race. By saving an extra pitstop you could be improving your overall race time by up to 20 seconds. More importantly you wont be struggling as much while your tyres are losing grip.
One final genreal tip would be to watch your tyre temperatures during a race. Keeping an eye on your tyre temperatures is always a great indicator as to how hard you are pushing your tyres. Generally try keeping your temperatures below 100°C will help aid your tyre wear.
Hopefully the above will help you improve your overall race craft and make managing your tyres a less stressful affair.
Tyre wear describes the speed at which your tyres lose grip. Throughout a race your tyres will wear and you will find the car gets slipperier and harder to control.
When your tyres wear during a race you will be forced to make a pitstop to change your tyres.
The soft tyres give you the most grip, at the cost of the fastest tyre wear. You will be able to drive faster, but your tyres will wear out sooner. Hard tyres give you the least grip but last the longest. Medium tyres are a combination of the two, giving you decent grip and speed, with fairly good tyre wear.