Pirelli: Softer tyres move not a risk for second Silverstone F1 race

Pirelli boss Mario Isola has downplayed concerns about the move to softer compounds for the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at Silverstone following the failures in last weekend's British GP

Pirelli: Softer tyres move not a risk for second Silverstone F1 race

Pirelli's analysis of the front-left failures on the Formula 1 cars of Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas and Carlos Sainz Jr has confirmed that the unusually long stints run after drivers made early stops under the safety car led to the failures, which created a situation that Isola called a "a perfect storm."

The Italian company has stuck with the original decision to move to the C2, C3 and C4 range - leaving out the C1s that failed last weekend - but will mandate increased pressures. The minimum front pressure will be up by 2psi, and the rear by 1psi.

Isola insists that softer compounds won't create any extra risk as the tyre compound did not have an impact on the failures suffered on Sunday.

PLUS: Why Silverstone is "not friends" with tyres

"The investigation says that the cause of the initial loss of pressure and then the deflation was the level of stress on the tyre, on the construction of the tyre," Isola said. "And for that reason the action we are taking for the next race is to increase the pressure, because obviously it is the pressure that is helping the construction.

"And we keep the same compounds, C2, C3 and C4, that have been already decided a few weeks ago. The tread compound is not affecting in any way what happened on the tyres.

"I don't want to use the word perfect storm, because I don't like it, but the fact that the safety car was out on lap 12, obviously was pushing everybody to change on lap 12. In a normal situation, a normal strategy was to change for cars that were targeting a one-stop strategy at lap 18-20.

"Consider also that when you follow a safety car the pressure is going down, and then obviously at the restart of the safety car, there is a period in which the pressure grows.

"At the restart of the safety car you have a very quick corner, with a lot of energy that is going into the tyre. We usually consider that in our estimation, when we give the prescriptions, we consider all that. And it was confirmed from telemetry data that the level of energy was very, very high.

"So the safety car plus the long stint plus the fact that the construction with less tread is less protected caused an initial loss of pressure, and the loss of pressure leads to a deflation. If you look at the tyres they had both sidewalls still in place in the right position, and the tread ring was broken, that is the typical situation when you run the tyre flat."

PLUS: The crucial factors that took Hamilton to the brink of disaster

Isola says that the move to softer compounds will automatically force teams to run shorter stints next weekend, with multiple stops expected.

"I believe that because we are going with one step softer compounds the length of the stint will be shorter by definition because the compounds are softer.

"Consider that the medium compound that will be the hard for this weekend, the only one that was running 36 laps was Grosjean, and tyres were completely finished. So I struggle to believe that they can run more than 30-something laps next weekend."

Isola confirmed that many cars finished with cuts on their tyres, an issue not related to the Mercedes and McLaren failures.

Red Bull boss Christian Horner said on Sunday that the set taken off Max Verstappen's car at his late stop had multiple cuts, suggesting that the Dutchman's might have had a failure had he not pitted in his efforts to get fastest lap.

"It is true that we recorded a high number of cuts, in some cases they were superficial, in some cases they were quite deep," said Isola.

"The high number of cuts was recorded especially on the tyres from the second stint. I believe that the pieces of the front wing lost by Kimi Raikkonen was the main cause of the cuts on the tyres.

"We had one tyre, if I remember well it was the front left from [Nicholas] Latifi, with a puncture. The tyre was still losing air when he was coming back to parc ferme. I confirm that there was debris on track, I confirm we found some cuts.

"Also from the tyres used in the first stint, probably from the accident of Kvyat. But I think we came to the conclusion that the cuts were not responsible for what happened to the tyres of Mercedes and Carlos Sainz.

"It is clear with a high level of wear most of the tyres were close to 100% wear, without rubber on the tread, that is exposing the construction, the construction is less protected, and any impact on the construction has a different effect. And also any piece of debris is more dangerous, because it can cut the construction, and therefore cause a failure.

"But to tell you if the cuts on Max's tyre were big enough to stop him without an additional pit stop is difficult to say."

shares
comments
Todt: Formula 1 has set "global example" with return to racing

Previous article

Todt: Formula 1 has set "global example" with return to racing

Next article

F1 working on "standard" provisional calendar for 2021

F1 working on "standard" provisional calendar for 2021
Load comments
Why momentum is again behind Australia’s aces Plus

Why momentum is again behind Australia’s aces

At the Italian Grand Prix Daniel Ricciardo turned around a troubled F1 season and, in F2, Oscar Piastri demonstrated once again that he is a potential star of the future. BEN EDWARDS weighs up the prospects of F1 having two Australian stars

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers Plus

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers

Michael Schumacher is the latest sporting superstar to get the ‘Netflix treatment’, with a special documentary film airing on the US streaming giant’s platform this month. DAMIEN SMITH has the inside track on how the filmmakers gained access to tell the human story behind one of Formula 1’s most publicity-shy champions - while the man himself, for obvious reasons, is in absentia… 

Formula 1
Sep 25, 2021
The times that suggest Verstappen should be confident of F1 Russian GP recovery Plus

The times that suggest Verstappen should be confident of F1 Russian GP recovery

For the second race in a row, Mercedes has ended the first day of track action on top. It’s in a commanding position at the Russian Grand Prix once again – this time largely thanks to Max Verstappen’s upcoming engine-change grid penalty. But there’s plenty to suggest all hope is not lost for the championship leader at Sochi

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2021
The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1 Plus

The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2021
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Plus

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. DAMIEN SMITH brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Plus

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus Plus

How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Plus

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021