Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes Storm the Podium at Season’s First F1 Race

TIBCO Formula One Partnership
Reading Time: 3 minutes

That was exciting! The first Formula One race of the much-anticipated 2022 season delivered a shock ending, with the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team seizing upon Red Bull’s reliability issues to take P3 and P4, just behind Ferrari. The Mercedes-AMG Petronas team is fighting to extend its consecutive Constructors championships to nine. Bahrain’s surprising results leave them in contention, though the team still has a lot of work ahead.  

An Assured Lewis Hamilton

Last year’s opening race, also in Bahrain, was a thriller, with Sir Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes edging out Max Verstappen of Red Bull. This year, new rules and a spending cap intended to bring competitive balance to Formula 1 delivered even more drama. A super-fast Ferrari claimed the top two spots on the podium, while Hamilton and his teammate, George Russell,  took advantage of Red Bull’s fuel pump failures and grabbed the third and fourth positions.

Hamilton, focused on his quest for a record-shattering eight driver’s championships, said after the race: “Great start to the season. We gave it our all and ended up with the best result we could have. Well done to the Ferraris, great to see them share the podium. Big week of work ahead but I know we got this.”

A bold claim, but not unfounded. As this TIBCO Spotfire visualization reveals, F1 driver fortunes can shift dramatically from race to race and season to season. Hamilton and the Mercedes-AMG Petronas team have shown a rousing ability to stay at the top. With his P3 finish in Bahrain, Hamilton now adds the record for most podium finishes, 183, to his legacy.

TIBCO Spotfire® visualization reveals F1 points rankings for drivers and teams.

Faster with Data

Reliability proved of critical importance at the Bahrain Grand Prix. Both Red Bull cars were forced to exit the race, and AlphaTauri likewise suffered a DNF. Prior to the race, Michael O’Connell, TIBCO’s Chief Analytics Officer, noted that “while car design has been changing radically in the pre-season, the (Mercedes-AMG Petronas) team also allowed room to tune approximately 50 car configuration parameters, including suspension, rear and front wings, and aerodynamics. This is important for the Bahrain race, where a wide range of temperatures can occur.” The work paid off.

Over the past season, the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team expanded its use of TIBCO Spotfire in race simulations. Using Spotfire analysis, the team is able to assess the effects of a range of parameters and configurations, from aerodynamics, suspension, and more. Mercedes-AMG Petronas conducts millions of simulations over the course of a race season, with the resulting insight helping them to win championships.

The Mercedes-AMG Petronas team also expanded its use of the TIBCO Cost Visualizer Tool to gain detailed cost-value analysis across engineering and finance data. This enables the team to maximize resources under the new F1 spending cap rules.  

A Marathon Season

There are 23 races on the F1 2022 calendar. Despite garnering zero points, Red Bull cannot be counted out. Nor, the Mercedes-AMG Petronas team—which has won the past eight Formula 1 Constructors’ championships. After their 1-2 finish in Bahrain, Ferrari is also solidly in the mix following several years of struggles. 

Next week brings us the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix, where last year Hamilton narrowly outpaced Red Bull’s Verstappen. Then it’s a two-week break until the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne. A fun and far-flung launch to a marathon season. One that will no doubt keep fans enthralled and data analytics experts fully engaged. 

As this TIBCO Spotfire visualization reveals, F1 driver fortunes can shift dramatically from race to race and season to season. Click To Tweet

You can read more about the TIBCO partnership with the Mercedes F1 team here.