Pirelli set for breakthrough in battle over 2017 Formula 1 testing

Formula 1 is poised to open up the regulations so Pirelli can run an old car to test the range of rubber required for 2017, Autosport has learned

Pirelli set for breakthrough in battle over 2017 Formula 1 testing

Earlier this week the teams finally agreed on a set of rules for next season that will ensure the cars are at least three seconds per lap quicker.

It means Pirelli can start work on 2017 development at last, although it still requires an adequate test programme.

Testing of the construction of the tyres, and their suitability to cope with the additional loads that will be generated, can be done on in-house test rigs, but running the rule over compounds requires track time.

While the rules for this season accommodate six two-day tests, they dictate if a car prior from 2012-14 is used Pirelli can only use demonstration tyres, or only demonstration or 2011 tyres if it is a car from that season.

But under discussion, and almost certain to be ratified by the new rules cut-off date of April 30, is Pirelli being allowed to use a V8-spec car.

Another option on the table is running a modified GP2 car.

Speaking to Autosport, Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery said: "We're pleased there has been a decision [with regard to the 2017 regulations], which was our primary objective because time was running on.

"We were given assurances of what the aero package would look like by the end of February, and the sport has delivered that.

"The first step has been taken, which allows us to work to the parameters of what the tyre is going to be subjected to in 2017."

Regarding the eventual testing of compounds, Hembery added: "Ideally you want something like a V8 from the last technology era.

"There is something to indicate the performance levels of those cars were close in some respects to the 2017 regs.

"So it's being discussed. It's an example of the type of vehicle that will allow us to do the work we want.

"We could do a lot of good work with compounding on a V8-era car, and that is something we will be looking to do.

"Considering there is a good number of those cars around and available, it would be sensible for that to be an avenue we explore and try to find a solution with.

"It could also be done on a lesser performing car, possibly an actual GP2 car."

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has also confirmed a GP2 car is an option.

"In an ideal world Pirelli will pick up a car and simulate the type of loads we are anticipating," Horner told Autosport.

"For example, we've talked about doing the testing on a modified GP2 car. That was something that was discussed this week."

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