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Formula One Weather Forecast: Hungarian Grand Prix 2010

Ian Fergusson | 10:23 UK time, Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Hungaroring, 30 July - 01 August 2010 (Round 12)

(This forecast will be regularly updated. This entry: Sunday 1 August, 09:30hrs BST)

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Nowcast Updates: (NB - previous updates have been moved to the end of this blog)

SUN 09:25 BST: A glorious, cloudless morning in Budapest with strong sunshine across the circuit and the track temperatures will be a good deal higher than yesterday. The fine, rather hot weather will prevail through today, albeit with some fair-weather cumulus around into this afternoon and only a very small (<10%) chance of any of this developing further locally, to offer well-isolated showers. Indeed, the precipitation signal from the ensembles today is effectively just trace amounts at Budapest (1mm or so). The upper trough that offered the more widespread showery / thundery weather of Friday and Saturday has relaxed off eastwards, where deep convection is now primarily focused across the high ground of western Romania this morning.


SAT 13:45 BST: The showers now forming in a developmental area SE of the circuit will not arrive until after qualifying - by which time they could be turning heavier and thundery.

SAT 11:55 BST: The steering upper flow at 750 / 500hPa is essentially NNW-N at present, hence directing the storms a smidge west of Budapest in the next hour or so. It's this sort of fairly small-scale margin of forecast uncertainty that can make all the difference when trying to broad-brush a 'showery' forecast some hours / days ahead! As noted below, had this thundery cluster and downpours been 30-40 miles east (and that's really nothing in meteorological terms of forecast error bar), qualifying would be all set for some major (weather) drama...potentially even to the extent of being undriveable. Oh well!

SAT 11:40 BST: I bet the teams (if not the fans) are breathing a sigh of relief that the thunderstorms are staying firmly on the west side of the Danube - had they been on the east side, with the same progress, spatial coverage and northerly track, it would have been a direct hit for qualifying!

SAT 11:20 BST: No threat expected for qualifying from the lively cluster of thundery cells continuing to ease NNW into southern/central Hungary - current trajectory of this feature ensures it will track slightly west of Budapest later. So, aside from any isolated shower potential from local convective development (as temperatures rise to release instability), it's a dry, fine and increasingly very warm story continuing today into qualifying.

SAT 09:44 BST: Fine conditions at the circuit for FP3 then; worth keeping an eye for later on the next cluster of heavy showers and thunderstorms just easing into south Hungary (now visible on radar).

SAT 09:00 BST: Hmmm. Some mid-level instability is rather noticeable in webcam shots above Budapest during the last 15 minutes. Will keep an eye on it....

SAT 08:30 BST: So, as forecast the rain was fairly extensive last night and pretty heavy in places, too. Thunderstorms rumbled not far south of the circuit until dawn; some high veils of cirrus this morning now the last visible evidence of them. The showers have now faded and sunshine prevails, with dry weather across northern Hungary. As noted in my forecasts earlier (see below), we can expect some extensive dry periods now, albeit with the chance of showers re-forming later. It's very possible these will appear post-qualifying however, so we can't rely on the weather gods to shake-up this particular grid! We shall see....

SAT 00:05 BST: The thundery rain forecast for tonight finally looms into view. In the next hour, some moderately heavy downpours will ease north across the circuit. Thundery elements are now widespread within the rainband, with a lot of recent lightning showing on the detection network (see link above). The latest UKMO NAE modelling continues the shower threat into the remainder of today, but - as noted all along - some prolonged drier intervals for many districts. So, the sessions could stay dry, but with showers building later PM.


Forecast Summary:

(PPN = Precipitation)

Emphasis: Showers likely at times, but some prolonged dry and warm interludes dominating. Latest ensembles offer periodic wet weather arriving Friday (heaviest late PM); some spells of rain / showers Saturday - again mostly late PM; with Sunday largely dry & fine; a low chance of scattered showers developing PM. 

Friday: Mostly cloudy; some brighter / sunny spells at times through broken mid-level cloud. Outbreaks of rain / showers / thunderstorms edging slowly east; these likely to develop more widely eastwards in the afternoon / evening / overnight,  turning prolonged & heavy in places. Chance of PPN 70% (PM). Max 22C. Wind variable; light SSE / SSW later.

Saturday: Variable cloud cover with thundery spells of rain possible very early AM. Sunny spells then developing, albeit with some extensive high cloud at times and turning cloudier into the afternoon. Prolonged dry spells, potentially lasting for both track sessions. Showers forming through the afternoon and into the evening across Budapest area, some heavy. Chance of PPN 50%.  Max 25C. Wind light NNW.

Sunday: Widespread sunshine. Very warm. Dry, fine weather across northern Hungary; some limited convective cloud building locally through the afternoon to introduce a very low risk of well-scattered showers, but more so in eastern areas of Hungary. Dry race very likely. Chance of PPN 10%. Max 28C. Wind light WNW. 


Synopsis & Forecast Evolution:

(With sincere thanks to Mike Trigger, Deputy Chief Forecaster, UK Met Office, for his expert input into my preparation of this latest forecast update)

Located in Mogyoród, some 11 miles (18km) northeast of Budapest, the Hungaroring circuit is set in a  semi-rural topographical 'bowl' and often prone to bone-dry, dusty conditions at this time of year. However, it might be anything but dry and dusty at times later during Friday and indeed Saturday too, as an occluding front - tied to an upper trough - swings eastwards across Hungary through the weekend, offering a strong likelihood of showers making an appearance at various times around Budapest.

There's growing inter-model agreement for the broad evolution on Friday, as the frontal system - sitting effectively quasi-stationary for much of the day through Austria, Croatia and western Hungary - slowly starts to edge a bit further east.

However, some small timing differences between the key models (ECMWF, UKMO-GM and US-GFS) are critical and account for some of the 'spot forecast' variation many of you might have read on different weather websites!

For most of Friday, the models do concur in keeping the very wettest conditions further west / SW beneath the upper trough, especially across the borderlands with Austria and down into Slovenia and Croatia.

FP1 should stay dry albeit one or two showers are possible even at that stage of the day under largely brighter conditions. But as more cloud spills eastwards into the afternoon, it offers a steadily increasing chance of seeing some showers at times, associated with waves of upper forcing running northwards through the frontal band. The rate of frontal progression (and it has tended to vary!) will be important here for the wet/dry fortunes of FP2.

Thereafter, we expect an increasing chance of some periodically wet (potentially very wet) weather arriving later into the afternoon, evening and overnight... it's possible some of the downpours will turn heavy and thundery, offering a strong possibility of the circuit returning to entirely 'green' conditions ahead of Saturday.

Saturday will see the upper trough and occluding front moving further east across Budapest. The day may start overcast with some early morning thundery rain; thereafter brighter spells developing and a dry window likely into FP3 and qualifying.

However, under sunny spells and aided by insolation, the clouds are likely to start building into the afternoon in the distinctly unstable conditions and later offer a likelihood of showers, potentially around the time of qualifying but more especially afterwards. 

By Sunday the models all agree on the upper trough relaxing further away to the east, albeit with some slight differences on exactly how far east it sits.

It's expected for the race to run in the sort of entirely dry and very warm conditions so often witnessed at this track, with strong sunshine. However, a few areas of convective cloud could bubble-up into the afternoon locally across some districts of Hungary, perhaps providing a (very low) chance of an isolated shower, but these are much more likely out further to the east. 


Previous Nowcast Updates...

FRI 12:30 BST: The next frontal wave running up out of Zagreb area (Croatia) into SW Hungary is turning very lively and producing some readily thundery embedded cells with prodigious lightning. It'll track NNE into Budapest later for this evening. Meantime, as the current 'old' wave dies quickly now, the circuit should escape dry for FP2, bar a few spots of rain... not totally clear-cut given a bit of re-activation at the extreme south of this current plume of rain.

FRI 12:20 BST: A fair bit more rain on the webcam now, so at least there's some reliable groundtruth for tallying to the recorded rainfall radar return...!

FRI 12:10 BST: I suspect the teams are going to just get lucky here! The rain progress is (a) very slow eastwards and (b) rapidly now losing upper forcing in any case. I expect it might offer a few spots of rain into the circuit later in the session, but probably nothing more. So a good chance for FP2 to run under overcast skies (so lower track temperature) but in dry or largely dry conditions... meanwhile, as this area of rain fades northwards this afternoon, the next pulse is visible to the SSW on radar, being fed up as another wave runs up the frontal zone northwards. IIt'll offer a further threat of heavy showers / rain later this evening and tonight across Budapest.

FRI 12:00 BST: Spots of rain again now on the webcam in central Budapest...extensive high-based stratocumulus and altocumulus stratiformis above....

FRI 11:45 BST: Well, it's going to be interesting for FP2. You might recall how in the forecast text (below) I'd suggested: "The rate of frontal progression (and it has tended to vary!) will be important here for the wet/dry fortunes of FP2." No need to change this viewpoint... currently, it's raining on the western edge of Budapest but the eastward creep of the frontal band is very, very slow. Equally, the forcing is being gradually relaxed aloft, so trending more towards light / moderate rain for now. The increasing cloud and grey skies now across Budapest (see webcam above) are testimony to the close proximity of rain... but it's seemingly falling largely from mid-level instability close to the capital itself.

FRI 09:45 BST: The frontal rain lies not far west now of Budapest (see radar link above), with much of the earlier forcing now fading as we see a relaxing of the waves which will periodically run from south to north up the feature during today. This ebb and flow of development was well signalled in the latest models. For now, more widespread sunny spells prevailing; a hint of some localised convective development but any threat of showers held at bay through this session. By FP2 the frontal zone will be closer.

FRI 08:10 BST: Some hints of brighter / sunnier spells as the mid-level (altocumulus / altostatus) cloud breaks at times. The main rain and shower threat continues to be held out west, as per expectations. A reasonable chance for dry running in FP1 then, but further showers developing not far SSW of Budapest... and thundery oubreaks now in the main frontal band out in the SW of the country, edging east.

FRI 07:30 BST: Further showers now reported at Budapest - these very evident on the lens of the weather webcam (see link above).

FRI 06:10 BST: Lastest official observations from Budapest/Lorinc, south of the circuit (0500 GMT), report showers; temperature 18C, dewpoint 15 C; wind light NW; 7/8 cloud cover.

FRI 03:45 BST: Model timing and evolution currently looks good. A dry dawn in Budapest but (as the radar and lightning links above amply testify!) a lively thunderstorm is rumbling just west of the capital, in a pre-frontal showery zone ahead of more extensive rain - some heavy - draped through the western half of the country. As per the forecast below, this will all slowly edge eastwards later today with waves of forcing tending to intensify areas of it at times.


  • Comment number 1.

    Booooo! We want rain! And I don't mean on a Thursday night when it's going to clear the dust off the track.

    If we wanted to maximise the number of wet races in a season (without the risk of ice, to be fair) how would you order the calendar?

  • Comment number 2.

    Yes, 2nd race in a row with a very similar broad weather evolution! However, I do stress that the prospects for wet weather around on Friday and Saturday (in part) are pretty consistent in the models. The ECMWF ENS 00z run, for example, offers a higher chance of wet running Saturday, too. It's by no means a 'done deal' for Saturday to be entirely dry, albeit Sunday - by contrast - does look odds-on for fine, sunny and hot weather. Best, Ian

  • Comment number 3.

    Wish the rain thats forcast for Friday falls on Sunday

  • Comment number 4.

    Sorry ashleye123... but highly unlikely!! But then we've seen sufficient spice in all the dry races this season to offer more than enough hope for yet further fun and games on this (often uninspiring) track, rain or shine! Best, Ian

  • Comment number 5.

    Every weather forcast i see has a differnt forcast for the race. I seen one with thunder storms for both friday and sat, dry all weekend and one with rain on friday. Which ones right?

  • Comment number 6.

    Just to advise that due to IT work, I can't update the blog presently but please be advised of some important forecast changes based on latest ECMWF / UKMO modelling, effectively decreasing PPN prospects Friday; increasing them considerably Saturday and also somewhat Sunday (AM especially). Essentially the models have adopted some critical timing differences and synoptic developments which have major ramifications (and complications) for this forecast. More to follow later today.

  • Comment number 7.

    No point asking which 1 is right ashleye123 because forecasts can change hour by hour in some cases. But anyway, it seems like Sunday will be dry, so the chances of a Button winning in 06 type crazy race in mixed conditions are pretty low unfortunately. I suppose some rain on Friday and Saturday wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, though really only if qualifying was also affected. Still, whatever happens, I just hope it's a good race.

  • Comment number 8.

    Ah ok, we posted at the same time there Ian, in that case I'll say that if we do get some dry running on Friday and then Saturday is wet, (even if Sunday is then dry), then that gets the thumbs up from me.

  • Comment number 9.

    Agreed, Stevvy. Tricky one, this. I feel the dry forecast for Sunday will remain as-is but Saturday (and Friday for that matter) are a good deal more troublesome. The US Model continues with a largely dry story for Saturday and equally, wants most of the wet weather remaining west of Budapest on Friday, too. The EC model has elements of agreement but now offers a much 'noisier' rainfall signal on Saturday, versus Friday. UKMO also slaps the occluding frontal zone close to Budapest on Fri / Sat, hence also offering higher chance of showers Saturday. Sunday could see a few showers AM but I'm not convinced they'll be around to trouble the race... still looking dry for that window, with variable amounts of mid-level cloud and sunny spells. Rain likely to re-appear later into Monday, however. I will write a detailed update later today. Best, Ian

  • Comment number 10.

    Hungaroring Qualifying? Wet? I think I'll take that... ;) Although as always, there's no point in getting hopes up yet.

  • Comment number 11.

    No, don't get hopes up! A nightmare forecast for getting localised detail right at this juncture. But a colleague just pointed out that weather.com are least in agreement - using the US-GFS as their baseline! http://uk.weather.com/weather/10day-Budapest-HUXX0002

  • Comment number 12.

    Hungarian meteorologists also agree on the shower potential... all three days - http://www.met.hu/elorejelzesek/index.php?v=Budapest

  • Comment number 13.

    Well, it's not very often we have a difficult forecast for Hungary it must be said. Normally it's almost as simple as Bahrain (ie hot, dry, sunny, little/no cloud). Even at this stage though, the forecast is quite intriguing, and I can see it possibly being similar to Germany, where showers are possible, and they'll have to keep an eye on the radar. 1 thing I did notice about Germany though, was the fact that showers also seemed to pop up almost out of nowhere, and begin to develop and head towards the track. I presume that's possible for this weekend as well, but either way, it's going to be interesting. 1 thing I would like to ask though Ian, is if all the on track running does take place in dry conditions, are you expecting there to be any overnight rain between days, thereby leaving us with a green track once again? Oh and another couple of very quick questions. Will these Grand Prix weather blogs be continuing next season? Also, will we be getting a video forecast for this weekend (I notice that for Germany that we didn't get 1, though that's not a criticism, was just something I noticed).

  • Comment number 14.

    Autosport has thunderstoms on Saturday and Sunday

  • Comment number 15.

    Hi Ashleye,
    Yes, there's sufficient forcing to deliver some beefy (and potentially thundery) showers on both days but it's all about the nitty-gritty of where this lies in terms of regional geography and timing. Not sure where the Autosport weather feed originates but I'd imagine via US-GFS datasets. Sunday will lead into another showery spell for Monday... but will the race (and quali for that matter) avoid showers? By definition, it's going to be hit and miss. Either way, no day across the event carries a totally dry rainfall signal. What a lottery... radars at the ready!

  • Comment number 16.

    Hi Stevvy, re your last - the German GP video forecast didn't make it simply due to other work pressures that made studio time impossible. I'm bust filming a documentary for September and this F1 stuff can be very time consuming! Hopefully we'll manage this next one as a video. The blogs are intended as a permanent feature and so next season should be no different. The German shower distribution was heavily influenced by orography, as the radar clearly showed; the exact frontal position and attendant levels of forcing / troughing will be critical this time around. Best, Ian

  • Comment number 17.

    Autosport use a series of weather models mostly using GFS, ECMWF and UKMO (including fax charts!).

    They aren't just GFS noobs LOL.

    We're well and truly desperate here, especially for Sunday. I remember in 2006 it was predicted (even on the Saturday) to rain overnight leading to a sunny race - the rain stalled over the circuit and we got a classic race. It seems there may be some hope yet.

  • Comment number 18.

    Hi Speed_Racer - sorry, I was referring only to whatever spot graphic (automated, site-specific) forecast feed they might embed on the Autosport website, not the detailed written forecasts from Emlyn et al.
    I agree re the race prospects. Rain would help, but the steadily diminishing PPN signal from ECMWF (amongst others) is not especially inspiring in trying to add some spice! But hey, no day is entirely shower-free in the prognosis so we shall see.... Best, Ian

  • Comment number 19.

    Well, have to say, I'm not overly surprised at it looking potentially a bit drier than forecast, but who knows, it can still change, after all, it's only Thursday morning. Still think a bit of rain would be nice, for qualifying especially, but I've learnt this season not to get my hopes up too high too soon.

  • Comment number 20.

    Ian, may I ask what's the current confidence level with the forecasts? I'd say high for Friday and Sunday, but lower for Saturday?

  • Comment number 21.

    Cheers Ian as ever.

    A dry practice and qualifying would have been nice.

    Wet weather means less running and less opportunity for McLaren to test and setup their new rear end.

  • Comment number 22.

    Hi Highlander, you might yet get your wish - there's no certainty of wet running due to the showery nature of the set-up; Friday will hopefully prove broadly optimistic for FP1 and 2 but Saturday has potential to become a good deal trickier and maybe chuck some weather spanners in the works. The next model runs awaited with interest on this. Given how Paddy Lowe has already (clearly with his corporate press office's blessing) gone on the record to downplay the McLaren prospects here, I agree they will need every minute of dry running possible ahead of quali (and this on a track where both Lewis and Jenson have gathered good previous results, of course). I'm fascinated to see what (if any) revamping of the blown diffuser, associated new floor etc comes out of Woking for this event, given it's back-to-back with Hockenheim with little time to produce fundamentally variant new bits... however, very evidently the boffins at the Technology Centre will have assimilated some handy data from both cars during the last race itself and if anyone can bring new bits, it's surely the Macca's. Either way, I've no doubt both drivers (Lewis especially) will drive the wheels off the thing in typically spirited fashion, but hopefully not literally so, a la FP1 in Hockenheim!! Best, Ian

  • Comment number 23.

    No video forecast this weekend? =(

  • Comment number 24.

    Great to see you're so passionate, Ian.

    Thanks for the forecast Ian - this is quickly becoming one of my favourite BBC blogs and a source of great pre-race excitement and speculation, even if the forecast doesn't always turn out to be right! ;-)

  • Comment number 25.

    Is it true that there has never been a wet race at hungry and if yes why? It's in Europe where it rains and this race has been going on for a long time

  • Comment number 26.

    I totally agree with Kobayashi regarding it being 1 of his favourite BBC blogs, and the same applies to me. The number of updates from start to finish is......fantastic, and the detail really is equally fantastic. Can't think of any way that this could possibly be improved, it really is top notch, and very very much appreciated.

  • Comment number 27.

    That's not true F1RULZS. The 2006 race took place in wet conditions. However that's the only wet race at Hungary. It may be in Europe where it rains alot, and it may be something like 25 years since they started racing there, but a combination of Hungary and July/August is usually dry, much as December/January in the UK is usually wet. Some areas are just generally warm and dry for large periods of the year, or in specific parts of the year.

  • Comment number 28.

    Hmmmm, looks like it could be an interesting day weatherwise. Seemingly the teams will (yet again) be on radar watching duties. I'd imagine most years when they go to Hungary they just have the radar equipment there almost as a token gesture, thinking that they'll have no need for it. Not this weekend!

  • Comment number 29.

    Yup. MeteoFrance supply the radar (it's portable!). A very developmenmtal situation today and tomorrow, but as noted in my forecast, it'll take a while to shift the shower emphasis (under the upper trough) eastwards... so they could escape with dry sessions today. Hit or miss, given the showers already forming not far to the SW of Budapest.

  • Comment number 30.

    Well, going to be interesting to see how this develops given this new information. I know there's an hour to go to FP2, and then another 90mins for the session itself, but it seems like even at this stage it's impossible to call regarding whether there'll be any rain for FP2 or not.

  • Comment number 31.

    It looks like there'll be heavy rain at the end/just after practice 2.

  • Comment number 32.

    FRI 08:10 BST:
    FRI 07:30 BST:
    FRI 06:10 BST:
    FRI 03:45 BST:


    Do you ever sleep?

  • Comment number 33.

    zhang i think he does sleep. he's just gathered all the data together from the night.

    Ian, great blog! weather is the biggest uncertainty in F1. I enjoy reading this. shame everytime rain is forecast it NEVER comes. ha. the bbc weather forecast still says rain all day today. haven't seen a drop have we? those webcam images look very sunny.

  • Comment number 34.

    Ian, Autosport are saying Saturday and Sunday are going to be fully dry and hot, is that really true? :(

  • Comment number 35.

    It's a usual F1 forecast I'm afraid - the wet weather moves away when the serious running begins.

    Quite simply, it's going to be dry.

  • Comment number 36.

    Zhang: The nowcasts dating to 03:45am today are because I was up and working at the weatherdesk by then. I've been on our early shift today since 0340hrs.

  • Comment number 37.

    Sat0113 - thanks for the comments. Actually it has rained today in Budapest and extensively so earlier only a few miles west of the city. The fact that the earlier rain din't edge a few further miles east to reach the circuit is the sort of tricky local-scale detail that becomes clear only on the day as it evolves, and the nowcasting offering a dry FP2 with increasing cloud was correct, as was the comment written some 48hs before: ""The rate of frontal progression (and it has tended to vary!) will be important here for the wet/dry fortunes of FP2." In other words, mesoscale forecast has been very accurate so far and I'm happy with its continued continuity.

  • Comment number 38.

    I wonder if F1 was always wet what our reactions would be.

  • Comment number 39.

    Hi Stevvy / D_M_N, you might notice how the rainfall radar continues to paint the areas of fairly heavy rain - plus some very lively thunderstorms - edging north into Budapest and northern Hungary at the moment - see latest radar at http://www.met.hu/kepek/brod/index.php
    This was the expected evolution for this evening and tonight; still highly possible, therefore, for some to cross the circuit and hose it back to green conditions ahead of tomorrow AM.
    Obviously, the phasing / track of showers will - by definition - prove hit or miss. Tomorrow's high-resolution modelling still continues the story of sunny spells and a threat of showers, as per previous forecast expectations, so I think any totally, 100% dry forecast is very brave indeed in this sort of set-up! Of course, like today the rain could miss the circuit and fall only ten or less miles away... who knows! Part of the 'what if?' excitement with this sort of site-specific and time-window specific forecasting! The Sunday forecast - as explained in detail within te text above - is effectively for dry and sunny/hot weather, and a low % chance of afternoon showers. In other words, highly likely to be dry, but the shower potential worth emphasising nonethless - but that forecast expectation has been a common part of the thread all along. Tomorrow will be pretty tricky. Best, Ian

  • Comment number 40.

    Well, even if it does rain tonight, and tomorrow night, I'll be quite disappointed really if the rain only falls when the cars aren't on track, or at least doesn't fall before a session which leaves the track damp/wet (as usual, because the weather seems to like messing around with us this season).

  • Comment number 41.

    any updates on the forecast Ian? i see from that 'rainfall radar' link, a huge band of rain moving north-east.

  • Comment number 42.

    Hi sato113, I wrote an update here at 6.27pm which - as you might see above - has vanished to the moderators because I foolishly included a weblink in it!! Doh. The basic thrust is that the forecast emphasis has really not changed much. The showers / areas of rain you see on the radar are the anticipated NE continuation of the frontal activity / frontal waves into this evening / tonight. Some of this has turned thundery in places but is mostly moderate intensity rain at most. Funnily enough, I was only just noting to Jake Humphrey that it's all about how many pulses of this cross the circuit tonight (or not) - note the fragmentary nature of the precipitation and rather hit-miss complexion to it all. They'll surely get some rain tonight; just how much (locally) between now and dawn is obviously open to question. Tomorrow's forecast remains pretty identical: perhaps very early AM some rain around; then drying up and tending to brighten up somewhat, but a risk of showers popping-up later. Note my longstanding remarks about 'prolonged dry spells' however, so whether the sessions tomorrow are shower-affected is an impossible call to make reliably, until we see the radar reality unfolding (like today). Still a pretty high chance of showers around parts of N Hungary in the last high-resolution modelling I've seen, but more especially later in the day (like today, for that matter). Sunday's race forecast remains as before - effectively dry and sunny, low chance of isolated showers later.

  • Comment number 43.

    This is the 25th Hungarian Grand Prix, yet there's only ever been one wet race when Button won in 2006. Is that some sort of record for f1 dryness!!!

  • Comment number 44.

    I'd imagine places like Bahrain/Abu Dhabi will have an even better record than that if they're on the calendar for long enough. I'm sure I remember reading before last years race in Abu Dhabi that the last time it'd rained there was in April (6 months earlier).

  • Comment number 45.

    Hmmm, while it seems the track will end up green for Saturday after tonights rain, sods law still says that if it rains later in the day, it'll probably be after the F1 cars have done on track for the day.

  • Comment number 46.

    Seems like a wet Saturday but a dry Sunday. Lets hope top teams make mistakes like they did in Malaysia for a exciting race.

  • Comment number 47.

    F1RULZS, the difference between here and Malaysia is that in Malaysia you can pass. Here it's very very difficult.

  • Comment number 48.

    Also you talk about a wet Saturday.......well it rained overnight, but there's very little rain on the radar at the moment. Don't get your hopes up for rain during the on track action.

  • Comment number 49.

    The rain will fall around 4-5pm local time, then move away long before the race.

    Like I said, it will be dry ...

  • Comment number 50.

    Morning! Yes, it's been very wet overnight. Circi received a fair amount of rain but it's all out of the way now, with dry weather into FP3 but perhaps still some residual damp areas on the circuit periphery - have not received word on this yet from colleagues there. Either way, strong chance of dry weather now albeit the showers building again later (some high resolution models keep a low-ish chance for quali) in the unstable conditions; these broadly more likely after we've seen daytime maxima (so later afternoon / evening) albeit this isn't taking into account any nuances of upper forcing that might come along during the day... race, as always expected, looks dry and fine; no change really there with the shower threat very low and now models all agreeing on locating this further east (and north over Slovenia high ground).

  • Comment number 51.

    (ABOVE TYPO - circi = circuit. Bad keyboard!!)

  • Comment number 52.

    So, rather disappointingly, typically, and unsurprisingly, it seems like any rain we get this weekend will fall when the cars aren't on track. Very disappointing, especially as I reckon the only chance of a remotely decent race tomorrow is for some rain during qualifying leading to a mixed up grid (yes overtaking isn't easy there but even so).

  • Comment number 53.

    SAT 11:20 BST: No threat expected for qualifying from the lively cluster of thundery cells continuing to ease NNW into southern/central Hungary - current trajectory of this feature ensures it will track slightly west of Budapest later. So, aside from any isolated shower potential from local convective development (as temperatures rise to release instability), it's a dry, fine and increasingly very warm story continuing today into qualifying.

    I don't know Ian, the rain should go east a bit shouldn't it? The forecast says wind from NW. Looking at the radar, I'm looking at the river that goes to Budapest, there is rain on the eastern side of it. The difference will be so small between a downpour for qualifying or no rain. Personally I think it will rain and this will make it better to watch as the Red Bulls have been so dominant so far.

  • Comment number 54.

    Hi James - current track continues emphasis on west side of the Danube, but whether it shifts more to the east as it approaches Budapest depends on possible change in the upper / mid level steering flow... not impossible but currently not considered the likely outcome. I just had another look at the windfields at 750 and 500hPa (the steering upper flow) and it's all exactly as per the storm track - NNW tending more N into the upper reaches of Hungary. Might affect west Budapest, mind you. But hey, over an hour to go - let's see!

  • Comment number 55.

    Any updates for tomorrow's race please? What's the likelihood of a bit of the wet stuff?

    Shame there wasn't any rain today - could've spiced things up a bit.

    Cheers Ian!

  • Comment number 56.

    Good to see you on Twitter Ian! Looks set for a dry race tomorrow but be handy when it comes to a more eventful weather story some weekend

  • Comment number 57.

    I suppose the rain tonight will fizzle out but tomorrow I guess that we could see some convective rainfall, just like at Turkey a couple of months ago. I shall live in hope!

  • Comment number 58.

    I get the impression that that's the only real hope of any rain for tomorrow James. Having seen the pace of RBR, I don't think many people would complain if there was a sudden shower/downpour halfway through the race like at Spa today at various points during the Spa 24hrs. Still, having been disappointed many times already this season, I live in hope that the feeling will change to 1 of surprise at some stage with a random shower.

  • Comment number 59.

    why is the official f1 website showing thunderstorms for the race?

  • Comment number 60.

    Ignore that, it's usually wrong. There's a very very low chance of any rain during the race, let alone storms.

  • Comment number 61.

    Come on Ian. Last Chance for some rain at Belgium. Surely!


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