Pirelli will change F1 tyres

29th April 2013

Pirelli will be tweaking their Formula One (F1) tyre compound, following complaints from world champions Red Bull. However, the tyre maker will not drastically change the composition of their tyres, as Red Bull have requested. The company previously stated it would not respond to demands at all, as many drivers defended Pirelli’s performance tyres and asked top executives to keep the compound consistent.

The decision to respond to Red Bull’s requests was made following a series of consultations with all F1 teams. The meetings evaluated performance data collated from the first four races of this season. Ultimately, directors and teams decided a hard tyre, like those supplied for last year’s series, might perform better in warmer weather, although soft compounds are designed to do that very thing. Simply, the hard tyres allow a different style of strategic driving on the racetrack. The new tyre, a revised version of the P Zero Orange, will be introduced at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya for the Spanish Grand Prix. The new tyres will appear throughout the remainder of the season.

Motorsport director Paul Hembery said: “This latest version of the hard compound is much closer to the 2012 tyre, with the aim of giving the teams more opportunity to run a wider range of strategies in combination with the other compounds, which remain unchanged.”

The vast majority of teams did not want any substantial change for F1 tyres, and are perfectly happy with the new softer compounds that encourage more frequent pit stops and overtaking. Therefore, most teams are expected to opt for soft and super-soft tyres at the Monaco race – with the obvious exception of Red Bull.

Despite winning two out of this season’s four races to date, Red Bull has complained that Pirelli’s F1 tyres are too soft, therefore negatively affecting the team’s performance.

The new P Zero Oranges are expected to be quite similar to last year’s medium tyres, offering slightly greater durability and speed. The changes reflect Pirelli’s adaptability and desire to meet consumer demands.

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Posted by Danielle Barge