Formula 1 teams get reduced camber limit for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza
|By Jonathan Noble||Tuesday, September 6th 2011, 10:05 GMT|
Formula 1 teams have been issued with a more conservative camber recommendation by Pirelli for this weekend's Italian Grand Prix, AUTOSPORT can reveal, to prevent a repeat of the tyre controversy that erupted in Belgium.
With the build-up to the Spa event being overshadowed by a tyre blistering issue suffered chiefly by Red Bull Racing, as a result of it going beyond the camber limit laid down before the event, Pirelli has reacted swiftly for the high-speed Monza venue.
AUTOSPORT understands that teams have been told by Pirelli that the maximum limit it wants to see used at Monza is 3.25 degrees - which is a level that it feels will ensure no overheating problems on the straights but will also not hinder teams through the high-speed corners or chicanes.
At Spa, teams were asked not go beyond a 4-degree limit - but Red Bull Racing was understood to have pushed the limit to as far as 4.3 degrees. It was this that contributed to the tyres overheating on the straights – producing the blisters that proved so worrying ahead of the race.
Pirelli's director of motorsport Paul Hembery said that lessons had been learned on both sides from the Spa affair. He was confident there would not be any repeat of the situation at Monza – which is a venue where blistering has been a problem for teams in the past.
"We've given slightly reduced limits to be slight more cautious," he told AUTOSPORT. "From the data we've seen, Monza is likely to be in some regards similar in severity to Spa. However, we will obviously have some dry running for once judging by the forecast – and with more cautious limits we will be fine.
"We couldn't go any more conservative than the limit we have set, because then you could have a problem in the curves with the camber not recovering. We have to be careful with these things, but we believe we've set a reasonable level for the teams to be at."
Hembery said that Pirelli's policy of offering advice on the camber limits had not changed in the aftermath of Spa, as he recognised that the circumstances in Belgium – with almost no dry running prior to qualifying – had contributed a great deal to what happened.
"We send out a pre-race recommendation and it hasn't changed," he said. "Being pragmatic, if we had had some dry running in practice then things would have turned out different. I think we all live and learn from that.
"Teams pushing the limits probably occurs at a lot of races, it is part of normal procedures, but what you end up doing when you find problems [like blisters] is you end up modifying the set-up and sorting it. Nobody could see it in Belgium because it rained throughout practice, so a lot of circumstances were involved there.
"That didn't help us and it didn't help Red Bull Racing, but we are not having an argument with them and they are not having an argument with us."
Hembery also made it clear that although much of the focus post-Spa had been on what Red Bull Racing did, the issue of following guidelines was a matter for every competitor.
"It is an all-team issue in reality," he said. "We ask all the teams to follow our guidelines, and because Red Bull Racing was at the front and won the race maybe the focus was more directed to them. But there were a couple of other issues we wanted to solve with other teams. We've tidied those matters up now and spoken to those involved."
There were some suggestions that in the aftermath of the Spa event, Pirelli and the FIA could react by making the camber limit mandatory on safety grounds – which would prevent any team going beyond its limits.
Hembery said that such a course of action was not needed now, but did not rule out the possibility if he felt it was required.
"I've not seen any communication about it, but that is always an option because this relates to the sort of areas where you want to be sure about what is happening, and be sure about the data that you are having to deal with. It's fundamental."