Pirelli predict overheating tyres in 2020

F1 teams voted to stick with the 2019 compounds for this year, and Pirelli fear that could lead to the tyres overheating more than before.

Stable regulations from 2019 to 2020 mean that the cars will likely only get faster as teams develop and find ways to extract more performance.

But this will put the Pirelli tyres under more pressure, and for this reason the Italian company say more overheating is the only strong prediction they can make for the upcoming campaign.

“In a condition of consistent technical regulation, because the technical regulations for this year is no different compared to last year, the rate of development is measuring 1 second to 1.5s per lap,” Pirelli’s motorsport boss Mario Isola told Motorsport.com.

“In one season [that is] the improvement in laptime. So, I can expect that we have another step in 2020.

“That means some more downforce, that means more energy. Probably, if we have to predict something, it could be more overheating, maybe.

“[That could be] more of a thing because of the additional energy that is going into the tyre.”

But Isola, who was speaking at Autosport International 2020, did give a positive to the situation, that being the fact that teams should struggle less with warming the tyres up in 2020.

“If you remember at the beginning of the [2019] season, some teams were complaining about warm up and in some occasions, it was a bit difficult to warm up the tyres,” he said.

“That is not going to be an issue for this year. They know the tyres, so the advantage compared to last year is that the learning curve on how to use a new product is already there.

“So there is no learning curve for the tyres this year.”

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Pirelli ease concerns over F1 being slower than F2

Pirelli boss, Mario Isola, does not believe the fear that Formula 1 racing will become slower than Formula 2 in 2021 will become a reality.

SportPesa Racing Point are one team who are particularly vocal about the possible ramifications of the regulations overhaul on the horizon which hopes to promote closer on-track racing and level the playing field to bring more excitement and unpredictability to the sport.

SportPesa Racing Point principal Otmar Szafnauer said last year: “My personal worry is that the cars are getting heavier, the downforce is going to be a lot less, so we’re going to be five, six, seven seconds slower than where we are.

“We need to have the ability to differentiate one car from another, otherwise they are all going to look the same and go seven seconds a lap slower.”

But Isola has countered by saying that whilst Formula 1  the cars will be slower, he cannot envisage the pace drop being as drastic as Szafnauer is predicting will happen.

“The regulations were not designed to have quicker cars in Formula 1,” he said.

“[That] was the target in 2017, it’s not the target for 2021.

“The target is completely different, it’s to have cars that are race-able with more overtaking, more action on-track and less effect of the downforce when you follow another car. Those are all positive aspects for Formula 1.

“Probably the cars will be slower for a number of reasons: Less downforce and heavier cars – the plan is to have cars that are heavier than the current ones and the weight has an effect on lap time.

“But that could be a few seconds. Not, for sure, slower than Formula 2. If a Formula 1 car in 2021 is two or three seconds slower than the current one and we have a much better show, I would say who cares?”

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Ferrari to test two cars in February

Having already been the first F1 team to announce the launch date of their 2020 car, it’s emerged that Ferrari will be running two versions of their latest design February

The team is planning on running a so-called ‘mule’ car at Jerez featuring 18-inch wheels as part of Pirelli’s tyre development programme for the new rules and regulations in 2021.

The track time will take place on Saturday February 8 next year, which will be a week and a half before the start of official F1 pre-season testing of the new 2020 cars to be held at the nearby Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

Ferrari plans to roll out their new 2020 car to the media at Maranello the following Tuesday, a full seven days before pre-season testing kicks off on February 18.

But Ferrari won’t be able to use the opportunity to get some early track time for their new car or to try out any new components, as F1 rules forbid teams from jumping the start of the official pre-season test.

Pirelli are allowed to undertake 25 days of development testing in total during the year between February 1 and the week after the season finale, spreading duties among all ten F1 teams.

With tyre testing intended to gather information for the tyres, wheel rim and wheel rim covers alone, Ferrari will use a modified version of the current SF90 with necessary adaptations to accommodate the new-size rims.

Mercedes took part in two days of tyre testing at Yas Marina following the final race of the 2019 season, using this year’s W10. McLaren and Renault have also conducted initial tests, but Ferrari says that cost concerns led them to delay trying out the new wheels.

The change of wheel size means that next year’s post-season test had been extended to three days to allow teams more time to prepare for the transition. Any team unable to find the time or cost involved in running an adapted ‘mule’ car will miss out on the test time.

Teams must spend at least one day with a currently active driver taking part in the 2020 season to allow them to receive comparison feedback on the 2021 tyres, while another day is reserved for rookies or those with minimal race experience.

All ten teams recently rejected adopting Pirelli’s new 2020 tyre compounds designed to reduce degradation and offer a wider working temperature range. The decision is intended to give teams greater stability ahead of the more significant transition to the new tyre size in 2021.

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Teams vote unanimously to keep 2019 tyres

All 10 Formula 1 teams have voted in favour of keeping the 2019 tyre compounds in place for the 2020 season, the FIA has confirmed.

The 2020 prototype tyres introduced by Pirelli did not receive an awful lot of love from the drivers who tested the new rubber out in the second half of the season and finally at the two-day tyre test in Abu Dhabi following the conclusion of the 2019 season.

Following a vote on Monday, the 2019 tyres are staying put for next season.

‘After having tested and analysed new specification tyres for 2020, a vote for the specification of the tyres for the 2020 Season was carried out according to Article 12.6.1 of the technical regulations,’ the FIA said in a press release.

‘The vote resulted in a unanimous decision to keep the 2019 specification tyres for the 2020 season by the Formula 1 teams.

‘The FIA would like to thank both Pirelli and all the teams for their work and collaboration to improve the tyres for the 2020 season and beyond.

‘In any case, the lessons leant will be invaluable for the further improvement of the tyres in the future.’

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F1 teams unanimously vote against Pirelli's 2020 tyres!

Formula 1’s 2019 tyres will be retained next season after a plan to introduce a new-spec tyre developed by Pirelli was unanimously rejected by the sport’s teams.

Pirelli’s mandate for next year called for F1’s exclusive tyre supplier to develop less degrading compounds that also offered a wider working range in terms of temperatures.

After the Italian manufacturer conducted a series of tests, teams were offered an opportunity to sample the 2020 rubber in free practice at Austin last month.

However, widespread negative feedback from drivers incited teams and Pirelli to wait for the more representative post-season test in Abu Dhabi to make a final call on the fate of the tyres for 2020.

After collecting and analyzing extensive data from last week’s two-day test at Yas Marina, all ten teams have voted against the introduction of Pirelli’s new-spec tyres for 2020.

“After having tested and analysed new specification tyres for 2020, a vote for the specification of the tyres for the 2020 Season was carried out according to Article 12.6.1 of the technical regulations,” read a statement issued by the FIA on Tuesday.

“The vote resulted in a unanimous decision to keep the 2019 specification tyres for the 2020 season by the Formula 1 teams.

“The FIA would like to thank both Pirelli and all the teams for their work and collaboration to improve the tyres for the 2020 season and beyond.

“In any case, the lessons learnt will be invaluable for the further improvement of the tyres in the future.”

(Updated)

In a statement, Pirelli said that retaining this year’s tyres will mean that teams will be guaranteed stability and a well-known product for 2020.

“The teams will no longer have to modify the designs of their 2020 cars, which would otherwise have been necessary to accommodate the different profile of the 2020 tyre construction.

“This will now allow the teams to continue the development of their 2020 cars – which are already at an advanced stage – uninterrupted.

“The use of the 2019 tyres also guarantees the teams stability, with the advantage of using a well-known product during the final season of the current regulations.”

Pirelli said the work devoted to its 2020-spec product hasn’t been lost as it will contribute to the development of its future 18-inch tyres which will be introduced in 2021.

“The new solutions for the 2020 construction tyres tested last week in Abu Dhabi, which Pirelli will continue to develop further for the 18-inch era from 2021, allow lower tyre pressures than those used at the moment to be run,” Pirelli stated.

“As a result, they are able to compensate for the increased performance expected from the next generation of cars.

“These new solutions seen on the 18-inch tyres that will be used from 2021 onwards, with the first on-track tests in this size have already shown positive results.”

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Pirelli to boost tyre pressures to cope with Zandvoort banking

Pirelli will have no other choice but to boost tyre temperatures next year at Zandvoort given the banked configuration of the Dutch track’s final corner.

Formula 1 will return to Zandvoort’s dunes next season for the first time since 1985. While the legendary circuit’s layout will remain largely unchanged, the track’s final right-hand ‘Arie Luyendijk’ sweep will be modified and feature an 18° banking!

“The corner will be banked 32 percent,” said Zandvoort CEO Robert van Overdijk. “So the difference in height from the bottom of the corner to the top will be around 4½ metres. That’s considerable.”

Indeed, the incline will be twice as steep as the turns at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where the banking wreaked havoc on Michelin’s tyres in 2005.

Pirelli head of car racing Mario Isola said that tyre pressures will be the only recourse available to help deal with the extra load at Zandvoort next year.

“The only thing we can do is to react with the pressure, and we will have to increase the starting pressure,” said Isola, quoted by Motorsport.com.

“If you look at the regulation we are obliged to stay on the same construction and same specification for the whole year, so we cannot design a tyre for the banking and we cannot design a specific construction, for Zandvoort.

“So the only possibility is to try to manage the prescriptions in terms of camber and pressure.”

Worn Pirelli tyre on the Ferrari SF90 of Charles Leclerc (MON) Ferrari in parc ferme. 23.06.2019

With the help of Zandvoort’s architects, Pirelli has started running simulations to test the resistance to load of its 2020 tyres.

“We have also made a simulation of the track being completely flat and with the camber, so you can see the difference in terms of additional load on the tyre,” explained Isola. “That was what we had in mind to calculate.

“But now to make a proper investigation, we need to receive the simulation from the teams and then we are in a position to define the pressure.”

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Red Bull drivers make a soft choice for Abu Dhabi

Brazilian Grand Prix winner Max Verstappen and Red Bull teammate Alex Albon have stocked up on soft tyres for F1’s season finale in Abu Dhabi.

Pirelli has revealed the compound allocations for the 20-car field at Yas Marina, with Verstappen and Albon making identical choices across the C3 to C5 range, the softest selection on offer by F1’s tyre supplier.

The Red Bull duo has opted for nine sets of the red-rimmed soft rubber, a preference also followed by Toro Rosso and Williams’ chargers.

All other drivers on the grid will rely on eight sets of the soft tyre, with a few variations among the teams regarding the yellow and medium compounds.

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix which takes place on December 1 will be followed by a post-season test at Yas Marina during which drivers will have another opportunity to sample Pirelli’s 2020-spec tyres after the initial test that took place in Austin.

As a reminder, teams and drivers were unimpressed with Pirelli’s latest product, criticizing the 2020-spec tyre’s grip levels.

F1 and the FIA are in the process of determining whether to give the future rubber the green light or remain with this year’s tyres in 2020, with a final call expected after the Abu Dhabi post-season test.

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Pirelli's 2020 tyres could get the axe from F1

Pirelli’s 2020 tyres didn’t deliver on teams’ expectations when trialed in Austin last weekend, and F1 is now mulling scrapping the new rubber altogether for next season.

During Friday’s opening day of running at the US Grand Prix, each driver was allocated two sets of Pirelli’s 2020 tyres for evaluation purposes, although the sampling was conducted in less than ideal cold conditions.

The feedback was anything but positive, with drivers complaining about the new spec’s performance and behavior, and Lewis Hamilton even holding back his comments, such was his disappointment.

A full analysis of last weekend’s trial by the teams and Pirelli is underway, but the consensus among team bosses appeared to favour a ditching of the new tyres and keeping the 2019 rubber for next year.

“We’ve agreed to take the time to analyse what happened here,” said Red Bull’s Christian Horner in Austin.

“The tyres weren’t a positive step here this weekend, and I think that was unanimous up and down the pitlane, but we have agreed to take a couple of days to study data and try to understand why.

“I think we will stick with what we have if what is proposed isn’t better.”

Racing Point’s Otmar Szafnauer believed that abandoning the 2020 tyres is the most likely recourse in light of last week’s disappointing experience.

“I think that’s the most likely outcome.” he told Motorsport.com.

“The 2020 construction really didn’t deliver what they said they were going to deliver, and it’s more risky that the value that it could deliver, so I think we’ve got no choice but to go back.

“Ask the drivers – it didn’t do what they said it was going to do.”

Indeed, Pirelli’s mandate for next year was to increase the tyres’ working range and reduce overheating, but drivers aren’t convinced those requirements have been met.

Pirelli F1 boss Mario Isola believes next month’s post-season test in Abu Dhabi should provide more relevant information and a better understanding of whether the new tyres fit the bill, but the Italian acknowledged that retaining this year’s compounds for next season is an option.

“I’m sure that with the two days that we have in Abu Dhabi we will have a more representative test, we will have the time to set up the car, to check the new profile, are they losing some points of downforce, all this kind of stuff,” Isola said.

“Nothing is impossible. It’s a bit strange, because the 2019 tyres have been criticised at the beginning of the season, and we put a lot of effort into developing something new.”

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Mercedes drivers opt for conservative tyre choice for Brazil

Mercedes has once again opted for a conservative tyre choice versus its Ferrari and Red Bull rivals for next week’s Brazilian Grand Prix.

Pirelli has selected the three hardest compounds in its range for the Interlagos event.

Mercedes and McLaren have gone for 8 sets of the C3 soft tyre – a field low – while Ferrari and Red Bull have each stocked up on 10 sets of the red-rimmed compound.

The choice was also followed by Renault, Haas and Racing Point, while Alfa Romeo, Toro Rosso and Williams drivers will all will have 9 sets of the soft tyre at their disposal.

With regard to the medium rubber, Lewis Hamilton has chosen 4 sets of the yellow tyre while Mercedes teammate has allocated to himself 3 sets of the medium compound.

All Ferrari and Red Bull drivers have made identical choices with regard to the medium and the hard tyre.

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Pirelli announces United States GP tyre allocations

Formula 1’s exclusive tyre supplier Pirelli has revealed details of drivers’ tyre allocations for next week’s United States Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas.

Pirelli is offering a selection of tyres from the C2, C3 and C4 compound categories – the same as they did for this weekend’s Mexican Grand Prix at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez.

Among the front runners, the most popular choice is for eight sets of the softest compound, the red-marked C4. In contrast, Mercedes and Ferrari requested only seven sets for Mexico while Red Bull went for nine.

Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas, Sebastian Vettel, Max Verstappen and Alexander Albon all make that selection for COTA. Hamilton and Vettel then top up their full allocation with two sets of the hard C2 and three of the medium C3, a decision shared by McLaren drivers Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris.

The other front runners opt for four mediums and take just the one default set of the hard tyre for the weekend. It makes Bottas, Verstappen and Albon the only drivers in the field to have four sets of the yellow-walled compound at their disposal in Austin.

The sole exception among the front runners is Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, who has requested nine sets of the soft tyre leaving him with just three sets of the medium and one of the hard.

Pirelli tyre allocations for the 2019 United States Grand Prix

© Pirelli

That’s exactly the same choice as Haas’ Romain Grosjean, Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen, Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat and Williams’ Robert Kubica.

Other drivers taking nine sets of softs – but evening up the hard and medium allocation – include Kevin Magnussen, Racing Point pair Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll, Antonio Giovinazzi, Pierre Gasly and George Russell.

Renault break the mould by being the only team on the grid to request 10 sets of the soft compound tyres for the weekend for Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg.

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