The Baku City Circuit is one of the most recent additions to Formula 1. Since the first race back in 2016, the track has been providing us with thrilling spectacles. The 2017 and 2018 Azerbaijan Grands Prix were about as chaotic as F1 races get.
If the idea of this appeals to you, or you’re unlucky enough to have a rain affected race in your My Team career, then this guide is what you need to maximise your pace on the soaked city streets.
Given the sheer number of long straights at Baku, it’s important to keep the wing settings fairly low – even in the wet.
I would recommend using 2-7 wings. Running a front wing angle of 1 leaves you struggling a lot through the very fast turns 18 and 19, and raising it to 2 doesn’t hurt the car’s drag too much.
With the high rear wing, you’ll be able to lay down the power nicely in the crucial traction zones.
Running an on-throttle differential setting of 50% also helps with traction.
With the off-throttle, 60% works nicely. There are plenty of slow corners around the circuit, and a low off-throttle differential setting helps to rotate the car in these turns.
On most tracks, the wet conditions require a camber setting as close to 0 as possible.
As such, camber settings of -2.50 and -1.00 help to make sure that the car is as easy to drive as it can be.
I’ve tended to find that running the minimum toe settings works really well in general, and especially in the wet. Toe levels of 0.05 and 0.20 also help to reduce tyre wear.
That being said, if ever there was a track to raise the front toe levels a little this is it, so consider moving that setting up slightly.
A softer suspension tends to work nicely in the wet conditions.
However, the fact that you want to avoid the majority of the kerbs in Baku means that you can run a slightly stiffer suspension than you would at other circuits in the wet.
For me, 2-6 gives me great balance, and the car is nice and responsive into the many 90 degree turns in Azerbaijan.
Going for 5-7 on the anti-roll bars also leads to a well-balanced car.
I would usually run a higher anti-roll bar setting in the wet, but rear tyre wear is a major factor around here, and limiting the stiffness of the anti-roll bar can help to mitigate this.
For your ride height, you won’t need to go as high as you would at other wet tracks. I’ve gone with 7-9, but this is on the cautious side.
If you’re confident in your ability to evade the worst of the kerbs, you could get away with lowering your ride height a little.
Nothing new here as I’m continuing to suggest that you use 100% brake pressure and 50% brake bias.
The rearward balance prevents front locking from being an issue, and the high brake pressure allows you to brake later and still make your apexes.
Wet conditions require low tyre pressures. On top of this, the high levels of rear tyre wear also encourage you to take some air out of the rears.
Therefore, going with 21.8psi for the fronts and 19.5psi for the rears gets you the best results around here.
A wet race in Baku may not be the stuff dreams are made of, but with this setup you won’t hate the experience. At least, you won’t hate it anywhere near as much.