Pirelli denies Vettel’s claim tyre marbles are dangerous

2011 F1 season

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Rubens Barrichello, Williams, Sepang, 2011

Pirelli has reacted to complaints about the increase in tyre ‘marbles’ seen at races this year.

Drivers including Sebastian Vettel and Paul di Resta have complained about the deposits of rubber left off-line and suggested they might be a danger to drivers and spectators.

Vettel told The Times last week: “The rubber marbles are a real threat.

“A car in front of you will shoot them like bullets. One of them hit me during practice on my visor. Not funny. Just imagine what it will be like in Singapore – or Monaco, where people sit very close to the track. They could be finding rubber pieces in their tea cups.”

A statement from the tyre supplier said: “This phenomenon is not new in Formula One, but it is most pronounced at circuits where there is a high degree of tyre wear, like Malaysia.

“Pirelli is looking at ways to reduce these deposits in future, but rubber on the circuit is an inevitable by-product of degradation and the marbles left on the circuit pose no danger to competitors or spectators.”

Motorsport director Paul Hembery added: “The rubber marbles on the track are a natural consequence of the increased degradation that has led to more exciting races: all that rubber has to go somewhere, just as it has always done in the past.

“Having said that, we’re here to serve the teams’ best interests and we’re looking at ways of reducing some of the deposits in the future.

“But that’s not going to change our fundamental philosophy: we want to give racing back to the racers.”

Pirelli said each tyre weighing 8.5kg typically loses 1.5kg in weight during a race stint.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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110 comments on “Pirelli denies Vettel’s claim tyre marbles are dangerous”

  1. rubber pieces in their tea cups…for sure EJ had it.

    1. Haha, good catch!

    2. Exactly! What’s next in the drivers’ tantrum list? “Mommy, mommy, this car is going 300+kmh, too fast, i’ll complain to FIA” or “Bernie, bernie, i’ve had more than 2 guys overtake me, it’s unfair/dangerous. I’ll complain to the press and bring this sport into disrepute”
      Aaah! I miss the 90’s racing!

      1. You mean when they complained about tyre barriers, run-off areas, curbs, blistering tyres, cockpit visibility, pit-exits… … …

      2. I don’t think you can hold it against the drivers… I don’t agree with them on this one, but if a driver is concerned about a safety aspect we can’t jump on him just because he makes his thoughts public.

    3. hahaha what’s he worried about, for the cars to shoot the rubber at him they have to be IN FRONT OF HIM.

      As such, it doesn’t look like this situation will be occuring too often for Vettel this season anyway lol!

  2. I would love to have genuine Formula One rubber fall into my tea cup

    1. Me too! Aside from the third degree burns requiring extensive reconstructive surgery it would be well worth it :D

      1. As a track marshal, I’m hit with marbles probably a few times a year. While some of the bigger ones do sting a bit, unless you catch one in the eye, I really don’t see how you could be injured by one. I’ve also never noticed them being particularly hot when they hit – it seems that the ones that hit you were the “cold” ones sitting on the track, not the “hot” ones that just came off a tire.

        As an aside – I have had one land in my Coffee before.

        1. Wow… COTD without a doubt!

        2. A marshal doesn’t move though. The speed you get hit, is the speed of the marble flying. A driver in the cockpit get hit with a lot more force because he is traveling at high speed.

          I don’t see how the drivers ain’t right on this and why you people think they shouldn’t say anything. Getting hit while driving at high speeds is more than just annoying. Not to mention that so many marbles defeat the purpose of encouraging overtake.

          Pirelli should just sit down and find a way for their tyre to stop spitting pieces of it self everywhere.

          1. Not to mention that so many marbles defeat the purpose of encouraging overtake.

            I’m still not convinced. Lots of marbles in Malaysia, lots of passing too.

    2. you want milk and rubber with that?

  3. Vitaly Petrov reckons he picked up a marble just before he ran off the circuit in Malaysia – but his problem (and the issue he wants the FIA to look at) is the placement of the drain that he hit and launched into the air since it’s right at the edge of the run-off area.

    1. His problem was that he didn’t lift as he came back onto the track!

      Drivers should be punished for running wide and they can’t expect to simply whizz back onto the track at full throttle every time!

      1. It wouldn’t have mattered if he lifted – he still would have hit the embankment. Just at slightly slower speed. The net result would have been the same, though.

        1. well if he hit it slower, or at a different angle, he would have gone alot less high and maybe not have broken his steering column…if he hit it alot slower, he would not have leapt in the air, and would not have broken his steering column, and would have finished the race, probably in the points!

          The net result would have been completely different! ultimately the force with which you hit something in an F1 car is nearly always a result of the speed at which you are traveling, and that force usually translates to damage…

          1. i he had been slower, the pitch of the car landing would have been at a different angle and he would have damaged his front suspension and would have retired anyway

          2. Yea agreed. He would have hit it but the faster these cars go the forces they exert on themselves increase exponentially.

        2. Oh and if you see what I replied to Jared below, I do agree maybe it is a little excessive, maybe the banks are high, but drivers should know where to rejoin the track, and where not to do so. Sometimes going off the track means you can’t put your foot on the throttle and head straight back onto the tarmac!

          p.s. sorry to run on but final point – if the rain gulleys were not as large as they were, or if they are changed as a result of this and next year it rains and that corner is flooded, the circuit designers will have a pretty good excuse!

      2. jsw11984 (@jarred-walmsley)
        14th April 2011, 11:16

        Yes, but despite that his issue was obviously more than just excess speed, I agree being punished for running wide is something that is needed but not at the risk of injury to the driver or spectators

        1. ok I agree that it is maybe a little excessive, I agree. But. Ultimately failure to break of failure to lift off the throttle by a driver will always be dangerous and the FIA and the circuit designers can do very little about this. Brundle and Coulthard on the BBC commentary, and they can be critical of circuits when they need to be, were only critical of Petrov saying that that was a clear example of a lack of experience as other drivers would have lifted!

          1. Whether other drivers would’ve lifted or not is not the issue in any of this. It’s the fact that what he hit should not have been so close to the track. If he didn’t keep the throttle he would only be going about about 40-50 kph slower and the result would’ve been the same, him flying through the air with a damaged car.

            It needs to be sorted, it wasn’t Petrov’s fault, a driver should be able to go off the track and come back without the risk of hitting something that sends them flying in the air.

    2. From the images, I thought immediately, that he must have hit the marbles there.

      That drain certainly was not a good Idea to have there.

      1. He didn’t hit a drain though. What he hit was the join between concrete, grass and astroturf, as many other tracks have.

    3. The crash was the drain’s fault, and also becuase it was between the tarmac and the grass, where there must already have been a small jump.

      1. the flight looked neat tho. must’ve sucked for petrov.

  4. Pirelli said each tyre weighing 8.5kg typically loses 1.5kg in weight during a race stint

    Wow… If 16 tyres per car are used over the 4 stints, and there are 24 cars, that’s something like 500kg of rubber deposited on the track per race! Take a bit off for the to factor in car that don’t complete the race, add a bit more because (with my sceptical hat on)because I bet Pirelli are underestimating…

    1. Take a bit off for the to factor in cars

    2. Plus Mark Webber doing an extra stint, minus the two Sauber drivers doing one stint fewer…

      1. Well if we’re going that far, add the fact that Barrichello lost an entire tyre through that puncture, so thats lots more rubber on the track…

      2. I think we can count on Hamilton leaving 0.5 kilo more than average per tyre, at least per his front left one ;)

        On the other hand Jenson probably leaves 0.5 kilo less, so the rubber emission standards in McLaren are achieved and they won’t have to buy extra certificates on the rubber market which may be set up next year to reduce rubber emission in F1.

  5. F1 going green – 24 cars, 4 wheels – on average per sting 144 kg of rubber left on track, Vettel’s visor and few tea cups.

  6. sell the marbles. Get your genuine f1 marbles here, look this one fell in the prince of Monaco’s hair tonic!

    Come on Bernie, your supposed to be a salesman

  7. I don’t believe I’ve ever heard of someone getting injured by a tyre marble – driver or fan. Anyone?

    1. I think most would probably love it! “this rubber came off the tyre that won Kobayashi’s first GP!”…however I think after a while, raining pellets of rubber would become a little tiresome. At least that is if you believe vettel. I think he is just looking for something to complain about because he doesn’t want to admit that like it or not, nothing has gone wrong for him yet this season! (well, kers maybe but in the grand scheme of things…). Maybe he wants the track to be swept in front of him, cleared of any debris apart from the useful rubber on the racing line, cleared of any backmarkers and carried along by F1 angels so that he can roar away and win the title half way through the season!

    2. Oh yes, I’d love to carry home such genuine piece of rubber falling from any car :) I just hope that those small bullets won’t hurt anyone, and that’s it.

    3. But, it’s obvious that Pirelli tyres are shreding in bigger chunks then any tyres before…

      If you pay attention at FIA technical regulations regardin’ tyres. You’ll see that Pirelli rubber doesn’t provide consistency for proper racing. If driver can destroy tyre in a single lap…, that tells you a lot about the tyre manufacturer. There is no excuse for such a poor performance.
      Consequently, the tyre in particular is not within the ragulations consistency wise…

      1. I remember seeing a sea of tyre chunks off-line down the malaysia back straight, just before the final corner in the last 10 or 15 laps. There was so much rubber, if someone went off-line to overtake, there was a huge potential of rubber flying into the radiator ducts and wrecking the engine.
        That could reduce overtaking, whereas Pirelli were told to bring atyre that makes racing more exciting. But, with drivers unwilling to drive off-line because of debris, that would completely defeat the objective.

        Food for thought

      2. If driver can destroy tyre in a single lap…, that tells you a lot about the tyre manufacturer.

        I think that it probably tells you more about, first of all, the car, and then it’s driver.

        And have you actually ‘fully’ read the regulations on tyres?

    4. Not directly. The number of times off-line detritus has been cited for generating errors giving rise to accidents, it’s almost certainly caused indirect injuries in the past, it’s just difficult to establish who.

    5. Doing trackside photography during Rolex series events, I’ve been hit by marbles in the esses at Watkins Glen thrown by cars traveling 115-125mph. It doesn’t hurt, and provided you don’t catch a marble with your eye I can’t see how any of this would by a danger to anyone in the stands, some 100 feet off the track surface.

    6. I don’t think it’s that dangerous, I never heard of anyone injured by a tyre marble, but I do believe that they slow you down and make off-line overtaking harder. That’s the main issue here. Safety risk is marginal, but rubber marbles make overtaking more difficult.

      I don’t want increased pit-stop drama, if racing suffers as a result.

    7. Rubber bullets have never hurt anyone. That’s why riot police use them. Totally safe… honest guv!

    8. I had a marble bounce off my head at Spa last year during 2nd practice as it was drying out and most people were still on the inters. It was just before the entry to Pouhon. Didn’t hurt, but it did seem to be going quite quickly. At a rough estimate I would put it at being 1cm x 2cm, so perhaps not the size of the marbles seen last weekend.

      Initially I was quite confused as I was focused on taking pictures and thought another spectator had thrown something at me. Upon finding a warm piece of rubber by my feet I was able to piece things together.

    9. Massa survived a metal spring, a small rubber marble shouldn’t be too dangerous.

    10. A friend at Albert Park said he was standing next to a man who was struck in the face by a tyre marble and went down like he was shot, although he was relatively uninjured once he got over the shock. Not having witnessed it myself I can’t say that’s 100% true, but I do trust the word of the source, he’s been to many GPs and is not an exaggerator, said he’s never seen something like that before. They were standing very close to the track, and the marble made it’s way through the surrounding barrier.

    11. I don’t believe I’ve ever heard of someone getting injured by a tyre marble – driver or fan. Anyone?

      I was at a Motorbike* convention and during an one the spot burnout of its rear tyre from a great big Kawasaki a piece of large rubber flung onto my forehead.

      The impact hardly mattered, the red hot rubber stuck to my 13 year old face however did sting quite a bit, being so young I’ve no scar, but I do believe its the hot rubber’s fault I now have Bruce Willis hair line. :D

      *Motorbike are these open wheeled racing machines that only have two wheels and no spoilers at all.

      1. *Motorbike are these open wheeled racing machines that only have two wheels and no spoilers at all.

        Good God Man! Are they mad?!!!!

        Anyone who watches World Superbikes or MotoGP quite regularly, must fall about laughing when they here about things like this.

      2. Moto… Totor… Bikey…. I don’t understand…

        Is it like formula ford (no wings) with a really rubbish driver? (two wheels left)

    12. Does Jacques Villeneuve’s Suzuka incident in 1996 count as marble?

  8. As long as the drivers going to be ok, i say more ramps off the circuit, more walls, more hidden half pipes that flip the cars thru a lateral 360 degrees like on Dukes of Hazard. Purist or not we all like spectacular offs occasionally

    1. Well I have not doubt Bernie would love the idea of an overtake / shortcut that involved sending the cars flying through the air, who knows, maybe through some burning hoops at the same time! So a jump and each circuit should be allowed, but only if your car is within ! sec of the car in front at a point 200m before the jump, which would time it perfectly to come down just in front, or if possible, right on top of the car in front! Bernie would love that…and we might convert some Nascar fans ;) !

      The driver which claims the most air-time over the course of the season get a special prize, sponsored buy red bull…because, as Mark Webber found out last year, Red Bull can giver you wings…

      1. I wish there was an edit button…that should read ‘…So a jump AT eachi circuit…if your car is within 1 sec of the car in front…

  9. Didnt Kimi once not lift through a cloud of smoke, debris and cars strewn across the track. Its fantastic sight to see a driver show that sort of nerve. We lose that at F1’s cost.

  10. Pirelli said each tyre weighing 8.5kg typically loses 1.5kg in weight during a race stint.

    And Alonso just set the fastest lap time! is he low on fuel? no his tyres were 6kg lighter compared to the rest.

  11. two words: “******”

    if you go off track you shouldnt get away with it. otherwise theres no skill. any fool (who can get an f1 seat) can keep going faster and faster till he goes off ,if theres no consequence. The real skill is being fastest and pushing the envelope with full knowledge that if you run out of talent/road your race is over.

  12. One thing for sure. After this season I’ll be very careful not to install Pirelli tyres on my car…

    Pirelli rubber or rubbish will see

    1. *sarcasm mode on* Indeed. Anyone can easily see that Pirelli can no longer make tyres that are safe for public roads. *sarcasm mode off*

    2. Looking at your comments Boomerang, do you work for Avon, Toyo, Michelin, Goodyear, Bridgestone or BF Goodrich?

  13. “But that’s not going to change our fundamental philosophy: we want to give racing back to the racers.”

    That’s not what is happening. It is not about racing anymore, but about strategy. Last year I have seen a lot of racing (and overtaking) and a lot less strategy (thanks tot the ban on refuelling) than in the first two races of this year.

    To quote the late Denis Jenkinson:

    “It was a race of tactics rather than gutsy racing.

    Formula 1 is imho about the fastest drivers in the fastest cars. Not about the best strategists. A race should not be won because of a good strategy, but because of the fastest driver in the fastest car.

    But that is my humble opinion. I care about action on the track, not off the track.

    1. Then the sport needs no pit stops then, the only requirement for it would be tires too degraded, weather change due to rain. Then racing will come back until then watch and see gimmicks.

      Personally wide grooved tires would be better low grip more mistakes.

      F1 is not the pinnacle of motorsport racing it’s the pinnacle of speed. Sport car racing has achieved more gutsy racing then f1 has achieved in 2 seasons and they don’t add gimmicks to their cars.

      1. I would go with the opposite. Big tyres with a lot of grip, groundeffect, so cars are less influenced by aerodynamics so can slipstream through corners and can overtake without the need of fast degrading tyres and DRS

    2. All sport, including F1, has a heavy dose of strategy.

      Tactics win football games, not merely the most expensive players. Tactics win Cricket games, etc etc etc.

      Strategy is hugely important in F1 and always has been. Quali is where we see the cars at top speed. Race is a race, not a competition to see who can set the fastest lap, but to see who crosses the line first. If you would rather, maybe we should simply have a two hour qualifying session on Sunday, and whoever sets the fastest lap wins…that is the only way the sport will ever be solely about outright speed.

    3. and last year you did not see alot more racing, you saw alot more conserving of tyres and cars nursing their tyres, trying to keep them going for a s long as possible. You did not see endless flying lap after flying lap. If thats what you thought you saw, you were thoroughly mistaken!

      1. I think we did see that actually. The Bridgestone tyres usually got faster towards the end of their stints. How logical is that?

        A graph would be nice. :)

        No one really had to look after their tyres in 2010.

        1. The tyres didn’t get faster, it was just that the cars went faster through weight loss from burning fuel, wearing disk brakes, the track rubbering in, all meant hat the overall pace of the car was more important than tyre degradation

          1. If

            the overall pace of the car was more important than tyre degradation

            we would probably now see both Red Bull cars at the top of the drivers championship standings.

            I’d hate to think how good the Red Bull cars would be on last seasons Bridgestone tyres. I’m glad that the drivers have something else to think about.

          2. Last year there were races with more overtaking actions than ever before, certainly since the (re)entrance of refuelling. This is statistically proven!

          3. Statistics can be found at ClipTheApex.com (need to register to see).

            For example

            2009 25 overtaking actions
            2010 41 overtaking actions
            2011 29 overtaking actions

            Malaysia 24, 28 (both rainy), 56

            For the whole season
            2009 244 overtakings (125 in dry races)
            2010 547 overtakings (320), which is the highest since 1986.

            In fact, you can see a large drop between 1993 and 1994 (refuelling), which only last year (ban on refuelling) returns to levels before 1994.

          4. Sorry, only Malaysia 2009 was a wet race. 2010 was a dry race (with more overtaking actions :) )

    4. Formula 1 is imho about the fastest drivers in the fastest cars. Not about the best strategists. A race should not be won because of a good strategy, but because of the fastest driver in the fastest car.

      What do you suggest?

      Bearing in mind that if you had no tyre or fuel stops, DRS or KERS, the racing would be VERY processional indeed. Sure the fastest driver would probably win in the fastest car (weighed 80/20 in favour of fastest car), but just staying awake would be a challenge in itself.

      F1 can no longer afford, in this day and age, to have a racing series where the result is almost a foregone conclusion.

      1. Just staying awake would be a challenge in itself

        Love that.

      2. See a couple of reactions above.

  14. knowledge update. pirelli were ASKED to provide a tire that degrades quickly to spice up the racing. ta dah it works.

    but maybe if everyone thinks… derr pirelli f1 tyres degrade quickly im not putting them on my Ford fiesta then Pirelli may get cold feet

    1. I don’t know if they were asked to provide a faster degrading tyre, I think it’s more that they wanted to keep the speed reasonable and they are unable to make a fast compound that doesn’t degrade so quickly.

      I’m sure Pirelli can make a tyre that’s 5 seconds a lap slower but has a similar pattern of wear to last year. As they get more experience making F1 tyres, I bet the tyres will degrade less and the speeds will remain consistent.

      1. Siv, higher degradation of the tyres is on purpose.

        The only thing that isn’t working quite as planned is how the performance falls off the edge of a cliff, they wanted the ‘end-of-life’ of the tyres to comeabout a bit more gradually (say over 4 laps instead of 1-2)

  15. anyone else annoyed at how condescending Hembery replies to criticisms on the pirellis? Ofc Pirelli are walking a delicate PR line here as their commercial tires need to be seen as rock solid, while in F1 all the talk is about how fast they degrade. Still the way he is handling criticism is hurting their PR more than anything else. I’m sure most F1 viewers realize the pirelli F1 tire is nothing like the road tires. If drivers say marbles could be a dangerous issue – which i don’t recall them ever doing about bridgestones- listen to them instead of dismissing it!

    1. anyone else annoyed at how condescending Hembery replies to criticisms on the pirellis

      Nothing in what he’s said strikes me as condescending.

  16. capefear. go watch it then.

    i personally think its a load of max power body kitted slow looking saloons, some even laughably diesels ( have you heard those things on a track? they sound like milk floats) driven by middle aged men with paunches who think pushing someone off track constitutes an overtake.

    …..hence i dont watch it, or visit their websites

  17. Sure Seb, just give us a few documented cases of someone being injured by marbles at a motor race. Until then, man up.

    Seems to me some drivers are finding excuses to derail Pirelli for reasons they don’t want to or can’t be (team PR) open about.

    1. Perez got hit by six kilos of ballast! I don’t think that tyre marbles are the most dangerous thing out there. It’s more probable, as was the case with Massa’s accident, that something larger and heavier than a tyre marble falling off a car is going to be of more concern.

  18. maybe red bull actually gives you these sort of wings


  19. That must be the reason Vettel is winnin all these races from the front…affraid of being smaked in the face by discarded rubber.

  20. Next they’ll have to stop racing in the rain, we don’t want raindrops shooting off the tyres and hurting anyone!

    Honestly! this is the 2nd most stupid thing i’ve heard this week.

    1. what was the most stupid thing you’ve heard?

      cause for me this is the most stupid thing :D

      1. Di Resta’s complaint wasn’t just having too much marbles, but that the marbles were hitting him and causing pain. Marbles can also cause a car to spin in the braking zone which depending on luck can either pass as a spectacle or a massive accident.

  21. “But that’s not going to change our fundamental philosophy: we want to give racing back to the racers.”

    By turning it into a tyre-conservation series?
    I think they’ve gone too far personally.

    1. Most teams seem to think that conserving the tyres isn’t actually a very good strategy. I believe there was far more conserving involved with last year’s Bridgestone tyres than we see this year. Messages like “look after your tyres” don’t always mean go into granny-driving mode.

      1. If you give them rock hard tyres to use, then you give the racing back to the engineers. Anything that makes the car more efficient or consistent will always play into the hands of people like Adrian Newey. And who, on here, wants that?

      2. No one had to really ‘look after’ last years tyres. If you can do almost the whole of every race on one set of tyres, there isn’t a whole lot of looking after to be done. It was only because you had to change compounds that drivers didn’t do the whole of the races on just one set of tyres.

        1. I think you have it a little mixed. They could do one stop because they looked after their tyres. Hamilton did that 2-stopper in Australia and immediately went 1.5s a lap faster, same with Webber. Unfortunately this year it looks like that’s not a viable option as they’re pretty much driving at 95% of the tyres’ capacity. This is because the Pirellis don’t fall off through heat like the Bridgestones did, but through design.

  22. Hamilton and Vettel asked about marbles in the press conference today:

    LH: I think it’s normal. In the past we had a lot of marbles in places like Montreal and of course you don’t have any run-off area, so it’s reasonably dangerous in some places there but now we have it more at other circuits – most of the circuits – but I don’t think it’s bad. I’ve tried overtaking a little bit. These tyres, OK, when you do go onto the marbles, you lose a bit of grip and it’s not that easy to clean them up as perhaps it was in the past but that’s racing. I don’t see any danger whatsoever.

    SV: The amount of marbles or pick-up we have next to the racing line is more than what we are used to simply because we are on different tyres. We have seen this throughout testing and now in the first couple of races we have double the amount of cars on the track in the race. There are a lot of marbles but I think Pirelli is aware of that and should it become a problem I think they can get on top of it and change it. There’s nothing we have to fear. I think the amount you can see on television, as well, at the beginning compared to the end, I think the amount of marbles and pick-up is huge but as I said, I don’t think we have anything to fear.

  23. Well to be honest there were alot of marbles in Malaysia, I noticed them particularly on that Degner style corner in Sector 1 (I think it’s that sector?).

    Like anything though, the drivers will moan and get battered by a few pieces of rubber but nothing major will come of it.

  24. Spectators being hit by tyre marbles is a big deal.

    Anyone that has ever been to a dirt speedway event is aware of getting showered in chunks of clay and the occasional stone.

    1. …and so has anyone on the outside of a corner of a rally stage.

      But if you’re worried about marbles from tyres at F1 races, heaven knows how you will handle the other things that are more concerning – loud noise, sunburn, overpriced food & drink, overzealous official program sellers. Better watch from the safety of the lounge instead

  25. I don’t think marbles are dangerous. But it definitely won’t help overtaking.

    1. But it definitely won’t help overtaking.

      I’m not convinced on this point.

      In Malaysia we saw a lot of marbles and a lot of overtaking, and quite a bit of it was done on the marbles or because of drivers making mistakes on marbles.

      1. Marbles make the track more slippery, making overtaking harder, when a driver does not make mistakes.

  26. i got hit by a cricket ball once whilst watching a cricket match, i was 5 so probably wasn’t concentrating fully.

    Anyway i see cricket is still being played with cricket balls

    1. COTD surely.

  27. How will anyone in his right mind have a cup of tea in a saucer in one of those grandstands. If he was talking about the rubber getting in through your straw and you accidentally swallow it while watching from the stands and sucking from a bottle, then I would be concerned.

  28. IMO. If all that the drivers have to worry about is being hit by a soft piece of rubber, then they’re having a pretty easy time of it.

  29. Pirelli is being a little bit too flip. Degredation necessarily means tire mass departing the tire. But it doesn’t mean it has to leave in big strips, reportedly what is happening, which necessarily travel less far from the line, and which may be more disruptive to car performance when becomes stuck to tires. Maybe they should try to look into that, and try to address the issue, instead of just telling people to pipe down when not praising them for improving The Show.

  30. I think Pirelli will regret getting involved with F1 as people might associate the poor performance on the track with poor performance on the road.

  31. One of them hit me during practice on my visor.

    I guess that almost had to have happened in practice. He’s led all but 5 laps so far this season.

  32. maybe he’s expecting *not* to lead this race so he is pre-warning the world about something that might hurt his finger.

    bullets, (magic) buttons and backmarkers… oh my!

  33. theres always been marbles, you can just see them easier now. theres always been dust off line and a track rubbering in arguably gives only one sticky line anyway

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