Shanghai is also one of the circuits most susceptible to wet races in the whole of F1. Below is a setup to help you if you find yourself facing the prospect of a wet Chinese Grand Prix in F1 2020.
Using the wings to promote stability is a central aspect of any wet setup in F1 2020. By running a front wing with a much lower angle than the rear wing, you’ll find yourself able to get on the power much sooner on the exit of all kinds of corners.
I’ve found 4-11 to be my personal sweet spot in this regard. However, feel free to adjust the front wing setting a little to match your personal tastes.
It is almost always best to run an on-throttle differential setting of 50%, and that is no different in this case. It helps to nurture the rear tyres, and promotes rear-end stability to boot.
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For the off-throttle setting, 75% is the way to go. Much lower and your car will start to slide too much, much higher and you’ll struggle to get enough rotation in long, low speed corners such as turns 1, 2 and 3.
China has a mixture of both fast and slow corners, and it’s important to cater for both in your setup.
Camber is one of the areas where you can build a balance between these two types of turn. To do this, stick with the default camber settings of -3.00 and -1.50.
Whether fast or slow, most of China’s corners are long. Running low toe settings helps you in these types of corners, so I would recommend the minimum settings: 0.05 and 0.20.
China isn’t a circuit with many large kerbs or other bumps, which gives you some freedom in how you want your suspension set up.
Despite this lack of any significant kerbs, I still prefer a softer suspension setup for the wet conditions. The balance and smoothness provided by a 4-4 suspension setting is perfect for these conditions.
The anti-roll bars will need to be relatively stiff, so as to prevent the car from ‘rolling’ too much in the longer corners. 8-9 works well, though it will work the tyres harder than a slightly softer setting would.
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A fairly high ride height is a must in the wet. However, you don’t need to go as crazy as at certain other tracks, such as Zandvoort. 7-9 gives you great stability, while not sacrificing as much straight line sped as a higher setting would.
Running a brake pressure of 100% with a brake bias of 50% is the perfect way to set up your brakes. You’ll have plenty of much-needed stopping power into the hairpins of turns 6 and 14, and the rearward bias will help you avoid lockups.
The bias setting will also help you with rotating the car around long corners, especially turns 1, 2 and 3.
Slightly low pressure tyres tend to give a better balance in the wet.
For me, 22.6psi on the fronts helps to keep left-front temperatures and therefore wear in check. For the rears, 20.7psi gives great traction, even in the wet.
In wet conditions, the most important thing is to be comfortable with the car. If you find yourself struggling with lockups, lower the brake pressure setting. If you’re finding too much understeer, raise the front wing angle a little.
Whatever your preferences, this setup will provide you with a solid and dependable baseline to build upon.