Pirelli keen to avoid claim of Red Bull favouritism

2013 Spanish Grand Prix

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Pirelli are wary of making too many changes to the current generation of tyres which might be seen as favouring Red Bull, who have persistently lobbied for more conservative compounds.

In the wake of yesterday’s Spanish Grand Prix Christian Horner said cars should not be making four pit stops per race.

Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery said that while Pirelli do not want to produce four-stop races, it did not want to be seen as favouring Red Bull either:

“You can imagine, though, if we make a change, that it might be seen that we’re making tyres for Red Bull in particular,” he said.

“That’s been the comment made in the media that Red Bull are pushing to make a change and if we do something that helps them you can understand that Lotus and Ferrari won’t be happy. So it’s a very difficult situation we sometimes find ourselves in.”

Hembery says this year’s tyres are degrading more quickly than they would like because of the increased performance of the cars:

“The cars are certainly pushing a lot harder than what we’ve seen in the past. The downforce levels are getting close to 2011 when the cars had blown diffusers. We also are seeing that with our new structure of tyre we’re pushing much harder the compounds. So combine those two together and we find that we really are working the compounds much more than we have done in the past.

“We don’t get to see the cars, of course, until we get racing with them. We don’t have any in-season testing, we don’t have access to those cars for testing so unfortunately we do have to learn sometimes when we’re actually at the race event.

“We will make changes, we want to bring something to Silverstone to make sure we are back on track, we’re at two or three stops. That could mean compound changes, structure changes, we’ll decide that within a week.”

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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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146 comments on “Pirelli keen to avoid claim of Red Bull favouritism”

  1. Why criticize the tyre when team like Rbr and Merc never include tyre in the equation of PERFORMANCE??

    1. jimscreechy (@)
      14th May 2013, 11:43

      I don’t understand this comment.

    2. +1 I hope the revised tyres for Canada will prevent the delamination because tyres should withstand no matter how aggresisve they are BUT it is up to the teams to build a car that can handle and work the tyres efficiently not the other way around. I think the problem Pirelli and (some) teams have this year is:
      1. no pre-season testing in warm condtions.
      2. Pirelli using an outdated test car.

    3. Agreed, but apparently the consequences are much more important performance wise, which is perhaps not ideal.

  2. I’m glad Hembery speaks like this, answers questions and doesn’t go with “the hell with the world, we’re doing what we were asked to”.

    It must be very tricky for the company to be in this situation. Not only it’s bad publicity, but it’s also hard to make changes as it’s seen as favouring one team or another. It’s understandable too that given the situation with no testing and all, it’s hard to develop the tyres and make they work better while still producing good races.

    That’s why we got to wait until later this year. It’s still early days and we’ll get more lineal races as the season goes on. As it’s always been the case.

    1. Surely if Red Bull are to gain an advantage by Pirelli changing the tyres, so are everyone else. If the Lotus and Ferrari are already easy on the tyres then making them more durable should serve to better their long run stints. Maybe they would even be able to do 1 stops whenever Red Bull appear to be able 2. This is turn would allow them greater flexibility in the races and allow them to get track position at circuits where it is important.

      Maybe I’m making things too simple, but I don’t see how a change in the tyres could benefit one team over all the others by a serious amount. As each team is so quick to say at the moment; “It’s the same for everyone.”

      1. It’s a bit of a political power-play (****-swinging) by Red Bull due to their prominence and success over recent years. It also smacks of poor form and “blame someone else.”
        I think their view is that the uplift in performance with a more durable tyre product would benefit cars such as theirs, more than other teams as they have a higher speed (down-force) cornering machine. Clearly they feel they are being compromised more than others for the direction Mr. Newey takes.
        That said when the main K.P.I. in Formula 1 is no longer headline performance you can see they have a point.
        Formula 1 needs spectators but not at the expense of the integrity of producing the fastest race cars.
        And with said it’s massively funny seeing R.B.R being told to “dry their eyes” by everybody!!

      2. err. No. The tyres operate within set operating temperatures which are directly linked to the compound. So amending the compound to make it more durable will affect its temperature operating window, which some cars find easier to achieve than others.

        Remember last year when Ferrari really struggled on the hard tyre? It was because they could not generate enough heat to make the tyre perform.

        So changing the compound (harder) will directly assist RB as they are able to find that temperature window quite easily, but get punished when the tyres won’t last

        This whole ridiculous situation is the fault of the FIA. No testing + crazy compounds = FAIL

        1. My point was a more durable (hard) tyre compound will benefit Red Bull.
          You appear to agree?
          What’s your point?
          Bad semantics on my behalf ? (hard v durable)
          I apologize unreservedly.
          You are the bestest xxx

      3. Hmmm I don’t lotus or Ferrari would appreciate a reduction in their advantage. I mean they may not be doing as great as they are capable, and I’m not suggesting that they aren’t, but to know that Mercedes and red bull are struggling worse than them and this would mean, at least in theory, that red bull and Mercedes are not doing well which equates to advantage lotus and Ferrari. Boulier has already said it would be unfair to change the compounds mid season because lotus and Ferrari have put in the hard yards and got it sort of right with the tires so changing he rules mid season would punishing them for getting it right and rewarding everyone else who didn’t do their homework well enough.

        1. Totally agree but Red Bull can huff’n’puff a bit more than Mercedes these days due to their meteoric rise to the grown-ups table.
          No issue, they deserve to be there.
          However Lotus and Ferrari play what’s in front of them. Red Bull complain.
          And ..hey-ho Pirelli capitulate and we see another championship handed to the Mr. Vettel.

    2. +1 to that! I always find myself getting riled up and bit devoid of the point after a race such as Spain. Hembrey always comes out with a cool head and doesn’t fall for any of the criticism, explaining the situation really well usually. The fact they don’t get to work with the cars before the season to test the tyres speaks heaps for what happened at Spain.

      The thing is though should the tyre manufacture really be trying to develop/understand their own product while teams are too? The constant evolution of the tyre throughout the season can’t make it easy on the teams…

  3. Red Bull will win every race if they brought back the old tyres.

    1. Well then it’s deserved. I think most people that are frustrated with drivers coasting around preserving their tyres so that they can only do 3 or 4 stops are not Red Bull fans, just fans of Formula One.

      If Pirelli had just stuck to the 2012 tyre then they wouldn’t have been favouring anyone and the engineers might have had a chance of designing a car with them in mind.

      1. the engineers are working now to get used to the 2013 tyres, everyone is in the same boat, get over it.

      2. @john-h

        Well then it’s deserved.

        No it’s not. Red Bull build a car around the 2012 tyres, Ferrari and Lotus build them around the 2013 tyres. Therefore, Ferrari and Lotus should be awarded for doing the better job, and RBR should be punished for not doing the best job.

        1. Fair point. I think it’s easier to make this argument if you’re a Ferrari fan for sure, but nevertheless I understand the point.

          It’s just a shame the drivers are not pushing, that’s my main gripe. I’ve had this problem with the tyres for the last 2 years now (I moan about it like a grumpy old man all the time, quite probably too much and I should be quiet). No one is going off the circuit, pushing anymore. Personally, I would like to see more DNFs but the car components are just not being tested to the limit anymore.

          The drivers are pretty much robots obeying the strategy best suited to the tyres. No one is sweating after a race, look at the podium after the race, it’s like they’ve been out for a Sunday drive.

          And I really don’t see how you can design a car around a tyre that was only made available in November. But there you go, I’ll try to cheer up now!

          I just want F1 back :)

          1. Did you see how alonso was pushing in the Spanish Grand Prix? He had to lead by 18 seconds to make his 4 stops work. He pushed and pushed hard with all his 4 tyres.. and he won. Now, if teams decide that they don’t want to push hard and want to save the 18 seconds of a pitstop, it is their unforced decision. Can’t blame Pirelli for this!

          2. Alonso drove at 90%, he said so after the race. To be honest I’m not bothered about who benefits team wise, I just think F1 should be about going faster than GP2 cars and drivers looking like they’ve put in a shift at the end of the race. I can’t believe so many people like this new f1 but there you go, I should get over it I guess.

        2. No it’s not.

          Yes, it is. Ferrari and Lotus didn’t “build” their cars around the 2013 tyres. That was impossible considering the teams had ZERO time to test the new tyres in the development phase of their new car. They had a glimpse at them with the old car, and then they could start testing them with the new car when the design was pretty much final.
          Neither the Ferrari nor the Lotus is something radically new compared to last year’s cars. It is Pirelli who designed the tyres to help Ferrari and Lotus (and everyone else) and to drag RBR down to their level. Which is understandable, the FIA wants to see competition rather than the dominance of one single team.
          But it kinda makes Ferrari and Lotus to look like sad losers who can’t compete without the regulations being bent in their favour.

          1. jimscreechy (@)
            14th May 2013, 12:19

            exactly, I wondered what he was on about then. How could they possibly develop a car around a tyre compound that hadn’t even been released. Even in testing some of the compounds hadn’t even been finalised.

          2. but surely you can strive to design a car which will be easier on its tyres at the expense of other performance areas? Even if you don’t have access to actual compound?

          3. So the teams do not develop their cars after winter testing. They just test how all the parts of the car works together on a circuit and send them straight to the first GP of the year.

      3. Staffan Hansson
        13th May 2013, 16:57

        Can’t say that it looked like Kimi, Massa or Alonso seemed to just coasting around..

        1. Danilo Schoeneberg
          13th May 2013, 19:01

          Drivers lapped 6 to 7 seconds slower than in qualifying. The “fastest” race lap was a 1:26.2 to 1:20.7 in qualifying. By F1 standards that’s a week! barcelona wasn’t a race. It was a pensioneers bus ride to Devon.

          1. In all forms of motorsports it’s universal that qualifying laps are faster then race laps.

          2. @fisha695
            Really? Is it normal to drive 7% slower in the race than in qualifying? Is it normal that the fastest lap in the race would hardly be enough to qualify for the race (107% limit)?

          3. @Lajo There is no point in the race at which you have the same combination fuel load and tire freshness as in qualifying so the point is not really valid.

            I don’t agree with tire nurturing but I also disagree with major title-interefering changes mid-season.

          4. @poul
            True but who said there was? What I mean is the fastest lap in the race is run on low fuel levels so the times shouldn’t be that much off those in qualifying. The 7% difference shows pretty well how much faster these cars could go on decent tyres. After all a car qualifying outside the 107% is deemed too slow to even start the race so how come even the fastest car runs that slowly on the race day? Pirelli have clearly overshot their target this year.

      4. Why on earth would it be deserved @john-h? Everyone knew the tyres would be changed. Some made the car fit the tyres great or at least good (Lotus, FI, Ferrari), while Red Bull and Mercedes got something right, but not completely and some teams missed the boat completely (Mclaren, Williams, to an extent Sauber).

        Just compare the reactions of Red Bull and Mercedes. Red Bull is “furious” and ask Bernie to intervene (sounds perfectly like the hated years of Ferrari crying foul each time they were not winning – see Michelin grooves and Mass-damper), while Mercedes call on their own team to improve the car. Who is right? Mercedes off course.

        1. @BasCB I actually think you’re right and I’m wrong, Ferrari and Lotus deserve their success. See my reply to @kingshark above. I just want to see the cars on the ragged edge of breaking point, not the tyres. I guess most people aren’t that bothered about seeing that kind of racing series anymore.

          1. Thanks for the update @john-h, and i agree that its hard to like a situation where people are doing their best to save the tyres and still end up with using them up to the canvas.

    2. If they have the fastest car then so be it. I’m obviously not the best one to be saying this as I am a Red Bull fan, but I’d trade slightly less competition up front if it means we had racing throughout the field (and in fact, I think we are more at risk of more boring Ferrari dominance currently).

      1. Ben (@scuderia29)
        13th May 2013, 17:33

        @vettel1 i’d say the fastest car out there right now is actually the Mercedes. We havent seen any ferrari dominance since 2004, any dominance is boring…but for the past 3 years vettel has come closer to being dominant than anyone else, even if it turns out ferrari do dominate (which i dont think they will) they havent done so for almost 10 years anyway.

        1. @scuderia29 good point, and I still wouldn’t care!

      2. @vettel1 if there is one thing I dont want its an other year off boring red bull dominance…

        1. @deurmat I actually wouldn’t think that would be the case: Lotus may fall back as they are pretty much winning because their lack of downforce now doesn’t matter because of these cheese-ball tyres but I reckon Ferrari and particularly Mercedes would still be right in contention: nobody would be walking away with it.

          Even then, was the racing really that bad the last three years? Even if the championship outcome has possibly become predictable I still think the racing has been really good and F1Fanatic members seem to agree on that one in general: most races have had an upward trajectory in the rankings since rate the race started and are now dipping down again since the tyres have gone too far.

          1. @vettel1

            these cheese-ball tyres

            Hmm, that sounds like something that that bloke catracho504 used to say when he reffered to the tyres. ;)
            I doubt Lotus would fall back, they seem to take better care of the tyres than ferrari.

            was the racing really that bad the last three years?

            Max, the frustration you are transmitting about these “cheese-ball” tyres, is actually the sentiment of almost every Ferrari fan out there for those years, especially 2011 where they simply could not get them to work! It seems the show is the other foot now!

          2. @karter22 it’s not so much from a Red Bull fan’s perspective I dislike the, though, because after all they are still leading both championships. I just hate races like that – don’t get me wrong I actually like having tyres that require some nursing but not this much. The end of 2012 was a great balance and for most of 2011 I liked it also, because we still saw some legitimate racing.

            The start of this years wasn’t awful but nor was it great but the Spanish GP was just terrible – I’m sorry, I just can’t see it any other way. Nobody raced their after the first lap – it was exclusively tyres. That made me quite sad as a Formula 1 fan.

            @bascb the key difference their is that those regulations can be interpreted by other teams and adapted to suit their needs – the very fact everyone is supplied with exactly the same product partially negates that point.

            My view is more due to the fact that in theory, the higher downforce cars of the Mercedes and the Red Bull should help the tyres but it’s doing the exact opposite in reality. So in essence, teams with a weaker car in terms of outright pace are actually in a better position – do you not think their is something fundamentally wrong there?

            That’s not really my main gripe with these tyres though, it’s the fact that so far they haven’t exactly produced stellar racing. I found Australia to be rather a damp squib; Malaysia was only really good for the Red Bull fight (and the first lap drama); China was just an exercise in how terrible the soft tyres were; Bahrain I have found to be the best race so far this year, but even then there was a lack of a battle up front (which I believe was what these tyres were trying to prevent happening) then to Spain – I can truthfully say that was the worst race I have seen since Germany 2010. Not exactly great, is it? By no means also do I think I’m in the boat alone…

          3. @vettel1

            for most of 2011 I liked it also, because we still saw some legitimate racing.

            Oh come on Max! 2011 saw racing? Maybe fights for second and third! As I remember 2011 was all about the SV show where he would get them to work instantly for him and he would drive off to the sunset! Of course you liked that! LOL
            I will agree though that 2012 was good. The main issue today is that it seems RBR basically carried over from 2012 and didn´t develop their car for the 2013 tyres as @bascb explained and therefore of course LOTUS and FERRARI deserve credit! They built their car for these tyres, although they might look similar to the 2012 cars… they are different so I also see it unfair for them to be punished for something they did right! This also goes for any other team that might moan about the tyres.
            My main problem is that! The moaning is making it a drag because look at MERC, they are definitely hating the tyres but what do they say as a team? They say they gotta work on their car! RBR is just asking for them to change the tyres! Why don´t they just shut up, man up, and develop their car?? It would at least save face a bit! And the sad thing is, they are leading both championships! There is a little food for thought for you Max!
            I will agree you´re not in the boat alne though! You and probably every other RBR fan are all for better tyres but that makes you and every other RBR fan just look like sour grapes! Sorry but it´s the truth and the thing is that the same show has been worn by SF and Lotus and man other team in recent years!

          4. @karter22 the reason Vettel dominated was not so much due to the tyres though as Red Bull’s superior use of the off-throttle EBD. Remember, Webber was nowhere near as good as him also! Honestly though, apart from at the head of the championship table the racing was actually really good – much better than in the early 2000’s.

            LOTUS and FERRARI deserve credit! They built their car for these tyres

            No, they really lucked into having a good car for the tyres. They both have the same chassis from last year and couldn’t possibly have developed the cars specifically around the tyre, as all they had to go on was the development tyres they received in Brazil for the winter. Bear in mind, these were not new cars.

            So really, it was pretty much luck-of-the-draw. Which is why we should’ve just stuck with the 2012 compounds: then that eliminates the variables, and may the best man win.

      3. The problem is, they have the fastest car for a different type of tyres @vettel1. Thats as if you would say someone has the fastest car for a different set of aero-rules. Or for a different engine type.

        They made a misjudgment, and developed the car in a way that now proves to have been not the best way (maybe there was more to those Renault engine mapping rumors then they wanted to give away at the time). Why would the others, who did a better job for the current package on track be punished by adapting to RBR’s way? Instead we could ask what would make Williams, or McLaren world beaters and adapt them that way. Would that be fair?. I hope that analogy shows where your view does not add up.

    3. possibly, but at least then every team would probably be able to engineer a car on a tyre that’s consistent.

      lets not forget Gutierrez set the fastest lap in spain. and in malaysia, with a car that’s apparently VERY slow, perez set the fastest lap? a ferrari dominated this race, a redbull the last, a mercedes gets all the pole positions but can’t keep within ~1 second per lap of the leaders and there’s up to 5 tyre changes in a race.

      ferrari couldn’t stay anywhere near rbr in bahrain but yet rbr dominated it, roles reversed last race. then reversed the race before, that, then reversed the race before that….

      there’s no way a team can engineer a car to work, when the tyres change dictate how the car can grip, and the tyres performance changes based on how the car works depending on temperature and track type.

      its not their job to worry about if rbr will win if they change tyres, its their job to produce a consistent tyre that will last 1-2 stops. they are clearly not doing that.

  4. While I understand Pirelli is is in a hard spot balancing all. The Worrying thing here is the fact that came out in Paul’s interview yesterday.

    Pat Humphrey said the following

    So if I said we were going to make a change, I know I am going to have the podium people today not happy – then you [the media] will be here at Silverstone telling me we have given the championship to Red Bull. It will be damned if you, damned if you don’t.

    Unless you all want us to give Red Bull the tyres to win the championship. It’s pretty clear. If we did that, there would be one team that would benefit and it would be them.”

    Does that mean that Pat Humphrey is given the job of – “Do what you can to stop Red Bull from winning the championship this year” ? I believe Pierlli should be making Tires and Not deciding the Track order. It specifically means that Pirelli has designed tires to make Ferrari happy.

    It does not seem to me that Red Bull are the only folks who are unhappy. Mercedes is also having the issues. I think even for that matter Alonso had a slow puncture. Ferrari were driving the cars in 90% form. All in all I think if Pirelli starts thinking about who will will the race and start designing tires according to them then we have a bigger problem here.

    1. Its not their job to design the tyres to suit a car, its the teams jobs to design the car to suit the tyres. Ferrari have so far done a good job, but Lotus have done an even better job.

      1. +1. Spot on. Tires are the common factor for all teams, it’s not Pirelli’s fault someone messed up their design so the car devours tires. Red Bull built a car around the concept of regaining 2011 downforce level no matter the cost. It’s their fault it didn’t pay off.

      2. I find Red Bull such a cringe worthy team. All their moaning about getting the tyres changed and they aren’t even the ones who are having the most trouble with them. What’s worse is they do all this complaining while leading both championships! They should shut up and focus on developing the car to better suit the only constant for all teams.

        1. @nick-uk
          You nailed it right there mate!! Gotta agree with you 100%

        2. The problem is that the tires are not “constant”. Lots of stops was expected but have they expected that many? The same compound performs differently on different circuits. To me it looks like the tire suits Ferrari and Lotus rather than they made their cars to suit the tire.

          1. @debeluhi Lotus team principle has specifically said in Australia that the car was developed with the intention to not abuse its tyres.

          2. …constant for all teams.

            That was the original quote. The tires are the same for everybody, including the venue-based performance differential.


    2. “Does that mean that Pat Humphrey is given the job of – “Do what you can to stop Red Bull from winning the championship this year” ?”

      Stikes me as a little bit of a chicken-and-egg dilemma. They made 2013 spec tyres and provided samples to all the teams in Brazil. Some teams adapted to it better than others – how was Pirelli to know who would fall in which camp? After 5 races it may seem Ferrari and Lotus are in the former camp and Mercedes and Red Bull in latter. Hembry’s point is, methinks, – while the original construction was done “in good faith”, to change the spec now will ostensibly look like bending to pressure / nepotism. Hence the “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” dilemma.

      Alas as crunchy as the tyres may currently be, it is hard to see them changing them significantly without causing an all out fracas in the pit lane.

      1. Isn’t November a bit late for the design teams to get the 2013 spec tyres? Most of the 2013 cars will have been quite advanced design wise by then.

        I’m worried that the tyre manufacturer has the power (in his own words) to decide the championship… it’s embarrassing for F1.

        1. not really, the teams had all of preseason testing to adapt, some did some didnt. merecedes worked on getting a fast car over 1 lap (as shown by th elast barcelona test times, and qualifying in races so far), but have failed over 60+ laps, teams like Ferrari and Lotus have adapted. these are million dollar budget teams, and it is all poletics, they are purposely pushing pirelli to change their tyres, because they cant make them work! – redbull and mercedes.

          1. @dennis, @john-h +1 to each of you! Basically, it’s a lottery into who has the car which suits it’s tyres the best; the emphasis is not so much on who actually has built the “best” car currently.

        2. Yes Nov is late. But its the same for everyone, no?

          1. Indeed it was the same for everyone. But when you say that it indeed was very late in the development of the car, you can’t really claim that Lotus and Ferrari specifically build a car around the new tyres and therefore did a ‘better job.’

          2. I don’t think I ever claimed Lotus or Ferrari did a “better job”. For all I know they lucked out?! By the way, let’s not forget that all teams had pre-season testing time with these tyres too so it wasn’t a complete lottery either.

            My only point is somebody WILL be unhappy no matter what Pirelli choose to do. How do you decide who that should be?

          3. Sorry, I didn’t specifically meant “you” said it. But it was a bit of a point here on that topic. I, too think Lotus lucked out.
            I don’t really like changing rules or things like tyres during the season. But I’m not a fan of the racing at the moment. And I certainly don’t like it, that F1 is becoming a bit of a design-lottery.

        3. As it was the teams asking for the change, and Pirelli reacting to that, its not as if it would have been a surprise. Pirelli had been informing about the way the tyres are going as early as mid-2012, but its hard to make a final compound available earlier than November @john-h

          1. @bascb why didn’t they just keep the 2012 compounds then?

          2. They softened the compounds because towards the second half of the year it was clear that teams were getting a grip on wear, so it was deemed a good idea to go a step softer for faster times and to bring wear back to where it was at the start of 2012 @vettel1.

            off course Pirelli has a tough job getting it exactly right, because their test car has far less downforce than the current crop has, and they cannot have learnt much from pre-season testing either.

          3. @bascb did we really need that though? I’m guessing they are just assuming all we care about is unpredictable results, but we’re not really getting that currently. All the races have been won by Red Bull, Ferrari or Lotus – this isn’t like 2012 anyway, and the racing itself is worse.

            I’d happily have any team be more dominant (which I doubt would happen anyway if the tyres were changed) if it meant world champions weren’t giving away positions in order to “conserve the tyres”.

          4. Good question, I am not sure overtaking and unpredictability is what people want to see @vettel1. But its sure that had they changed nothing at all, races would gradually have become one stoppers because teams find better and better ways to cope.
            And the softer compounds do help in getting these cars to go really fast in qualifying, more often than not the times from last year are beaten with them (the 2011 times when we had fully exploited exhaust blowing are not beaten, but the tyres are doing a good job of getting close enough)

          5. @bascb

            Good question, I am not sure overtaking and unpredictability is what people want to see

            If I’m assuming this is sarcasm, then you didn’t read what I said. Ferrari, Red Bull and Lotus are the only ones to win races and with three drivers – hardly unpredictable, is it? The “overtaking” we are seeing also is in general quite pathetic (case in point, Räikkönen on Vettel last race).

            If the teams could all manage one stoppers (I doubt they would at high deg tracks though) the so be it.

          6. As your assumption is wrong, I guess it does not make much sense for me to react to the rest of this post @vettel1.
            I am sure that after years where we seldom saw much passing apart from changes of position due to pitstops, it was probably to be expected that people would answer “yes” in some form to a survey asking them whether they wanted to see more passing. But I am not at all sure, or even convinced, that it was really what people wanted to see. And even less about whether what we have now is what people had in mind. Therefore your question is genuinely a very good one that needs to be part of a discussion on what we want from F1.

          7. @bascb ah well, sorry then!

            I would think most people, judging from the comments on this site at least, perfer quality over quantity. I haven’t seen many applauding soft overtakes like the one I have referred to or highway-style passes.

            I really think the FIA should actually respond to what the viewers want: I doubt it’s what we have now. I think the majority of us want to see racing, or how Martin Brundle put it “a 3-2 football match, not a 120-80 basketball game”.

  5. Sebastian Vettel is leading the Drivers’ Championship and Red Bull are leading the Constructors’ Championship. Why are they complaining so much? Do they really think it is their right to win every race? If they’re unsatisfied with the way their car uses up its tyres, they need to turn their attention inwards, not outwards.

    I’m not completely happy with the current situation either, but I don’t want Pirelli to make any major changes for the rest of this season. At most, Pirelli could provide the harder compounds more often. The teams knew what tyres they would be racing on this season, and it was up to them to design their cars accordingly; why penalise those who did the best job? Any debate over the tyres should be held in the context of 2014.

    1. If one is the best its their right to claim the win. When third paries interfere it’s just a reality show.

      1. *parties

      2. Fastest does not equal best.

        1. It does when the competition is about speed.

          1. Speed doesn’t garauntee finishing.

          2. No it doesn’t. F1 never was, isn’t, hopefully never will be 100m sprint.

          3. @jabosha, no but retirements these days are rare and that is beside the point anyway.

            @5150, suddenly racing is not about speed? What is F1 then? A popularity contest?

          4. It is, but not the way you understand it. It’s best AVERAGE speed. That doesn’t mean it is slow. In every form of racing winner is the one with best average speed over xxx laps or xxx km.

        2. So did you enjoy watching the race in Barcelona, seeing most of the field driving to delta times, letting other cars through (like a time trial) and not pushing their cars? Take the Ferrari hat off for a minute and consider that this might not be what Formula 1 should be about, regardless of who wins.

          The engines, drivers and the gearboxes are not being stressed at all. Call me old fashioned, but I want to see drivers sweating after a race and cars full of battle wounds. This is meant to be Formula 1, where did my first love go!!??

          1. @john-h
            I am a Ferrari fan and other than getting both drivers on the podium I found very little else to get excited about after the first few laps on Sunday.

          2. @beneboy thank you for not having clouded judgement. I think if we all try to be impartial about it – just paint all the cars grey and replace all the drivers with robots for the purposes of the thought experiment – who would prefer current F1 to F1 say last year, 2011 or 2010?

          3. Where did your F1 go wel go ask Adrian Newey and his Aero tricks !

    2. Sebastian Vettel is leading the Drivers’ Championship and Red Bull are leading the Constructors’ Championship. Why are they complaining so much? Do they really think it is their right to win every race?

      I do think the tyres were too much this weekend – but great point.

    3. I think it’s terrible, that we can’t have this discussion without talking about how this will benefit Red Bull.

      The main question is… Is Formula 1 better with these tyres? Do we want tyres that fall apart so quickly and are so brittle? (Even Alonso apparently had trouble) Do we want drivers to nurse their cars around the track and ask the team if they’re allowed to push or not?
      Tyres will and have always been a factor, but they should not be THE factor in Formula 1. Pirelli should have made a tyre that gives teams the opportunity to think about different strategies. Not forcing them to run all of their tyres in a 4 stop race, because they couldn’t make the distance afterwards.

      It was painful to hear Lewis Hamilton saying he can’t drive any slower.

    4. @estesark

      Sebastian Vettel is leading the Drivers’ Championship and Red Bull are leading the Constructors’ Championship. Why are they complaining so much? Do they really think it is their right to win every race? If they’re unsatisfied with the way their car uses up its tyres, they need to turn their attention inwards, not outwards.

      I have to agree with you mate! MERC is having a god aweful time with these lemos, yet they always talk about working harder to improve the car. They don´t talk about getting the tyres changed like RBR is doing. They really are turning out to be incredible sore losers! I hope RBR “fans” take notice!

      1. It’s not just Red Bull complaining but they are the obvious target to pick on. And when every change to the cars in the last few years has been implemented to specifically slow down the Red Bulls I understand their frustration, when all their hard work is undone by a tire designed for another team.

      2. @karter22

        I’m sorry, but I don’t know which F1 you are watching. It’s not the same as me. I can’t find any other person in the paddock moaning louder about the tyres than Niki Lauda. Then there’s Rosberg complaining, Lewis complaining, Toto Wolff mentioned that the tyres don’t make for good racing…

        You are seriously taking this stuff to a new level of bias.

      3. @karter22 I think that’s an incredibly unfair level of bias and the fact that it is constantly pointed out Red Bull are complaining about getting them changed whereas Mercedes instead are working on them is twisting the reality. Do you seriously think the same team who overcame the major problems they had last year to win the constructor’s championship yet again are just going to sit their and cry? I highly doubt that: I would bet the team members are working just as hard as everybody else at making the car faster, which if that means making it kinder on the tyres then that’s what they’ll do.

        Everybody seems to be forgetting that the PR talk is a separate entity from the team: of course they’d be lobbying for what they feel suits them, but it’s assuredly not all talk and no walk: they’ll be hard at work trying to solve the problem, from the political lobbying aspect and from the development aspect.

  6. So Dr. Helmut Marko was right when he said that RBR’s car had too much DF? And tyres are made such so RBR do not win. Great!

    1. Keep dreaming. Its their suspension geometry.

      1. And your evidence for this is what?

      2. Wrong, it’s mostly the downforce in RB’s case.
        The suspension geometry burning through tyres way too quickly is Mercedes’ gripe.

    2. The tyres were designed to wear out quicker than last year as Pirelli was requested. All teams got the chance to try them out in Brazil and they had a few months of time to analyze the data and make changes. Red Bull more than anyone as they started working on their 2013 car later than some other teams because of their title bid that continued right to the last race. Since they apparently didn’t manage to do that they are now suffering the consequences in form of not being able to look after tyres as much as they would like.

      Maybe it’s because their technical director specializes mostly in aerodynamics they accidentally designed a car that has “too much” downforce? And now they can’t work on the strong points of the car as they aren’t strong points at all.

      What will be interesting though is how Lotus and Ferrari will react if they lose their advantage due to the changes. They’ve (especially Lotus) been saying that “it’s the same for everybody”. Will that change? I’m sure Kimi doesn’t care but nevertheless it will be interesting to see.

      1. Teams had 2 sets of hard compound tyres in Brazil. If Ferrari and Lotus made their cars based on knowledge gathered by those runs and scientific method – hats off to them. But that compound wasn’t even used until yesterday. But what about the tyre construction? Was it changed between Brazil and Jerez? I don’t know but definately would like to.
        Since when is a bad thing for a modern racing car to have more DF?

        What irritates me the most is that the proposed quali tyres were declined by the teams. Or so news sites reported last year, right? Now we have 4 different types of quali tyres to be used in race. Even Pirreli labels option tyres as quali tyres. But primes a quali tyres too. What else to call tyres that last only for a lap?

        1. @crr917


          They had two extra sets of tyres, in addition to the normal sets they have for Fridays, prototypes of what they’ve used this year. They may have not represented any exact compound of 2013 but gave the teams an idea of what to expect.

          Too much downforce became a problem as the current tyres were introduced. Not a bad thing necessarily though: should F1 merely be a downforce championship in your opinion? It’s not like downforce has no meaning at all though; the cars still have wings as I’m sure you’ve noticed.

          1. They had two extra sets of tyres

            This is what I talked about. The topic was 2013 tyres afterall.

            Not a bad thing necessarily though: should F1 merely be a downforce championship in your opinion?

            There were cars that are fast on straights and fast in corners. And still achieved similar times over a lap most of the time. And now the cars meant to be fast in corners are nowhere, because someone either at Pirelli or above them said so. Could teams get this general idea from Brazil? Is a general idea sufficient when the margins are so slim? Aint’t this a downforce championship? Just the opposite one – more DF slower car.

  7. It’s a good job we’re not going to Turkey this year as Turn 8 would have made mincemeat out of this year’s compounds looking at the trouble teams had at Turn 3 yesterday.

  8. Quite frankly, I’m losing interest in Formula 1 because all we hear about is the tyres – and it seems like the only people complaining are the people who think they should be winning, but aren’t. Dietrich Mateschitz has attacked Formula 1 for the emphasis on tyre management, and maybe he has a point, but do you know who I didn’t hear complaining about the tyres in Barcelona? Ferrari.

    If Red Bull spent all the time they waste moaning to the media and trying to bend the sport to their will on actually trying to solve the problem of tyre management the way Ferrari has, the problem would solve itself.

    But, no. “We’re not winning anymore, so the whole sport is obviously broken!” has always been the favourite excuse of teams who are too short-sighted to realise that the sport changes despite their best efforts, not because of them.

    1. @prisoner-monkeys I think the point is not “we are not winning anymore” is “we are not racing anymore”; Vettel let Kimi past, Hamilton was going backwards and Kimi didn´t even bother on chase Alonso, I don´t konow you but I turned my tv off after half the race.

      1. I just have to wonder if Mateschitz would be criticising Pirelli if his team was winning …

        1. @prisoner-monkeys well RBR has been pretty consistent in criticize Pirelli, they did it even when Vettel won Bahrain

          1. Yeah, but they’ve always been a team that has felt that what is best for them is best for Formula 1. And since they’re paying Toro Rosso’s bills, they get an extra vote on issues, so if they’re really opposed to something – like the RRA – they can kill it even if everyone else is on-board with it.

      2. You never fight people who are on a different strategy from you, unless you are well clear from everyone else, because you will always lose time if you are fighting someone. It has nothing to do with these tires. We saw people fighting hard in the last few races without much care for tires.
        The thing is, thankfully, with Pirellis we are having strategies divided between 2 stoppers and 3 stoppers or 3 stoppers and 4 stoppers, which means there’s one more dimension to the race and I am very glad that the GPs are much less linear and much more dynamic with many more aspects coming into play. Especially when you take into account the fact that there’s much more of a feeling that it ain’t over ’till it’s over, unlike with less marginal tires where everything was pretty much decided after the first corner.
        And last, but most importantly, this IS the Formula 1 (emphasize on the word “formula” = set of rules) for this year and changing the tires mid-season means interfering with the competition and obviously at the benefit of Red Bull. There’s no argument about what is racing and what isn’t.

        Reason why Red Bull keeps complaining, even though they are leading, is because they know they are in the lead only courtesy of Ferrari’s failure to maximize their own potential in the first 4 races.

        1. So changing the rules mid season 2011 to slow down Red Bull was OK?

        2. And last, but most importantly, this IS the Formula 1 (emphasize on the word “formula” = set of rules) for this year and changing the tires mid-season means interfering with the competition

          Good laugh. Like rules were never changed mid year. Ever. Though it is a bad practice so I am not supportive. Still, tyres do fail this year which is enough reason for change. Maybe.

    2. @prisoner-monkeys Mateschitz doesn’t build the car, nor does Marko or Horner. Their job is the political aspect of the sport, so of course all they are going to do is try and bargain a situation which suits them. The team itself will undoubtably be hard at work trying to solve the problem, and I really don’t understand why anybody thinks any different.

      People seem to be forgetting that key element: the PR department is a separate entity entirely from the people developing the car.

  9. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    13th May 2013, 14:36

    I can see why Pirelli improving the tyres might come off as favoritism, but at the moment, no team is benefiting from these tyres, except for perhaps Lotus, and even they are still frustrated.

    I don’t think that improving the durability would improve Redbull’s chances of winning relative to how they are now. It’s not like RBR will benefit more than others if the tyres are the same.

  10. Agree with the sentiment by Pirelli as not being seen to favor any one team. Here is a thought of wonderment though, as the teams make all the technical adjustments to their respective cars, which tires are they adjusting for? As Pirelli changes the tires for each race they are also now making other adjustments to the adjustments. How are the teams to know what tire target they should be shooting for as they try to fine tune their cars?

  11. trueracingfan
    13th May 2013, 15:08

    For me F1 has seriously gone downhill since Perelli took over the tyre manufacturer, it is supposed to be the pinnacle of motorsport and everything about F1 has always been the best it can be FULL-STOP

    Obviously this should also be the case in respect of the tyres, if they can be made to last a whole race without losing performance then thats what should happen without question. Now I am no Redbull fan but if they end up winning every race because of this then so be it because all we have now is 11 1st class teams trying to preserve some stupid bl**dy rubber and quite frankly…who cares, what I want to see is who can make the quickest car and what driver can race the best

    I used to buy Pirelli tyres for my car, now I insist on Dunlop out of spite for them ruining my favourite sport

  12. It may be an impossible situation for them from a PR point of view, but I think they need to rise above it. The last thing they need to do is get bogged down in a discussion about the relative performance of individual teams. Because ultimately their remit is about supplying tyres for all teams, which the teams should then be making the best use of according to their requirements. The problem really being the lack of collaboration between the teams and the tyre supplier – teams are effectively developing the car for the following season based on guesses about the characteristics of the tyres which are yet to be developed. So you can understand then why a team would be a bit miffed when it turns out that their car doesn’t work well on the tyre.

    But the big issue here is that none of the cars work well on the tyre. Don’t confuse Ferrari winning with their car being suited to the tyre. It’s impossible to have a race without someone winning, after all. Ferrari being the least disadvantaged doesn’t necessarily mean that they have done the best job, or that they’re not suffering the same problems as everyone else. Of course, they may well prefer to struggle on while those conditions favour them, but that doesn’t mean that the tyres are fundamentally flawed.

    Hembery argues that he doesn’t want to be seen to favour Red Bull, but by doing so he implies that he doesn’t want to upset Ferrari and Lotus – effectively saying that he does favour them, because he’d rather maintain their advantage than potentially create tyres more suited to the Red Bull. This is the problem – as soon as you get into a debate about the relative performance of teams, you are effectively saying that the performance of those teams is a consideration in how you develop the tyre. That’s a very dangerous approach, and one which naturally leads to accusations of favouritism.

    The decision whether or not to change the tyres should be based on the tyres themselves and how they perform.

    Are they fast enough for the formula? Yes, the qually times are comparable to other manufacturers, and maintains F1’s position as the fastest circuit motorsport on the planet.

    Do they last long enough to give us the number of pitstops we expect? No – 4 stops should be a very exceptional maximum, not the norm as we’re currently seeing. Teams should be able to pick their strategy anywhere between 1 and 3 stops depending on the track.

    Are they reliable? No – we’ve seen several instances of delamination and tyre failures during the race, even when teams have been taking care to preserve the tyres and used geometry settings within the recommended tolerences.

    Do the drivers like driving on them? No – over half the grid have said publically that they don’t enjoy driving on these tyres. They don’t seem to give good feel to the driver, overheat very easily, are very difficult to keep in the operating temperature band, and don’t allow the driver the freedom to push hard at any point during the race.

    Do the spectators like them? Generally no, though not without exception. Fans don’t like seeing drivers in the pinnacle of motorsport being told over and over again to slow down, save the tyres, etc etc, above all other considerations. Nor do they like seeing drivers choose not to battle one another for position for fear of damaging the tyres.

    None of the considerations above have any real bearing on the performance of any individual team, and are universal to everyone. It seems that by their own definitions, the tyres produced this year are not fit for purpose. The high failure rate this year seems to be the biggest argument in favour of changing the construction of the tyre, and a more durable compound which can be raced on harder so we see less complaints from teams and drivers, and the fans get to see the best drivers in the world doing what they do best. Whether that means that certain teams benefit more than others should not factor into the decision at all.

    1. I agree and think that your comment covers a great part of the problema with this year tyres.

      As I see it Pirelli should do the changes, it is not only Red Bull the one asking for a revision on the tyres and certanly what was happened with Hamilton, Paul Di Resta (both with problems in practice) and with Massa in Bahrain (2 puntures) is something to worry about.

    2. Tyre COTD!

  13. I heard Mateschitz gave Ecclestone a ration of crap about the tires yesterday. I’m not happy about high-level lobbying going on about the racing spec. However, now that the FIA and Hembry have put the design and compound choices in play from race to race, any team would be foolish not to press as much as they can for a change in their favor. Furthermore, I think its a good thing that Luca is not the only one with the ability to jaw-bone the sport into making changes. Let’s not forget how Ferrari got Williams tires outlawed in 2002, a move that changed the course of that season. Other teams should not just sit back and let the big dogs bark because the big dogs can bite.

  14. One thing Pirelli and fans should keep in mind is that teams and their loud-mouths don’t really care whether they make 1 or 10 pitstop during the race. They just wanna be faster than the other teams, no matter how fast they are going relative to anything outside of F1. For all they care, they could be going two times faster than GP2 cars, or 2 times slower, it doesn’t matter to them, as long as they are going faster than their F1 opposition.

    When Horner says that 4 pitstops is too much for the fans, you can bet that he doesn’t give a damn about anything except trying to pressure Pirelli into bringing tires that will be better suited to Red Bull than the opposition.

    1. But its not just Christian Horner & Red Bull saying this, You have most the teams, Most the drivers & now most of the media, fans & even Pirelli themselfs saying that 4 stops was too much.

      Plus Don’t forget that Red Bull were just as critical of the tyres even when they won at Sepang .

      When you have a situation where drivers are told not to race & to just let another car past & where there lapping slower than GP2 cars, Something is wrong & its about time Pirelli were called on there stupidly artificial, gimmickey & unfit for purpose bubble-gum tyres.

      I’ve no interest in watching Formula Pirelli anymore, I’ll be finding other things to do with my Sunday afternoons.

  15. I think Pirelli are been stupid with some of the comments there making, Especially using Red Bull as the villain & the only one’s whining about the current tyres & suggesting that its only there current tyres stopping Red Bull from winning everything.

    A sole tyre supplier should not have the power to determine who wins & loses, You should not even be able to get the impression or thought that they could do & they certainly should never come out & suggest things like this in public.

    As I’ve detailed before pretty much every team & driver in F1 right now dislike the current tyres & the fact that your starting to hear more vocal criticism of the tyres from more people inside F1 suggests that frustrations are mounting.

    Pirelli should be focusing on doing whats best for F1 as a sport & whats best for all the teams, They should not be picking & choosing what there doing based on not wanting team x to win or doing things based on what they think fans do or don’t want to see & who they think fans do or don’t want to see win.

    The great thing about Bridgestone & GoodYear before them was that when they became the sole tyre supplier, They ensured they had tyres which worked on every car so that nobody was advantaged or disadvantaged by there tyres & this is a big part of why you rarely heard teams talk about tyres.

    1. When you have a single tire supplier that supplier necessarily determines who wins and who loses. You accept that issue if the tire design choice is done “blind,” i.e., before the teams test their cars. The tires menu, like the schedule, should be set in stone at the beginnning of the schedule. Once you start fiddling with the tires, it’s game on and you better expect every team to be riding Pirellis back at all times either looking to change the tire spec by whatever increment they can or to keep it the same.

      This is bad, but, as you say, Hembry is making it worse by trying to play the teams off each other—or red bull off the other teams. If he keeps on talking this nonesense we are going to have a serious crisis and a wider image problem with F1.

      While Hembry is foolish to react to RBR bullying directly, I have to say, however, that RBR does have a point. If they have the fastest car, but they can only run 70-80% pace becase of the tires, the sport is being robbed of something. Yes, they should have designed their car better. But the people pay their money and endure ads, in part, to see people like Vettel, Hamilton, Alonso drifting an F1 car, on the limit, through a high speed corner like turn 9 at Catalunya. They want to see guts and precision. We do not want to see anybody literally coasting to save tires. As it is now, probably any clown from the lower ranks of GP2 or a NASCAR driver could keep up with these guys. On reflection, accordingly, I also now don’t agree that Alonso proved that you can “race” with the tires and that Ferrari just shut up and got on with it. Buxton was wrong. Ferrari was also running no more than 90% when pushing says Alonso. In fact, Alonso was running about THREE SECONDS off his fuel corrected ideal time in 3rd stint. That is not even “90%”. Ferrari just had a better set up car than others, but Alonso’ win with 4 stops didn’t prove anything. Yamamato could have probably won the race in that car.

      1. Agree with all the points above. I posted a riposte to Buxtons claims on JAF1. Buxtons claims that Ferrari were “pushing” has now been debunked on so many levels.

  16. Everybody is on the same tires, so it is definitely fair “racing”. Ferrari and lotus should not be punished for working all preseason on understanding the tires. And red bull is not harder on their tires because of downforce. Mercedes is easily the worst and they don’t have as much downforce as red bull and maybe even Ferrari. Pirelli needs to supply the two hardest compounds for any race they’re worried about extreme degradation. By the end we’ll have no complaints about the tires,just like the previous two years.

    1. It’s fair but its not “racing.” It would be fair if every finalist in the men’s 100m race had to run in flip flops (and Usain Bolt may not win, if some people are bored of his winning) but it would not be much of a race.

      1. “I learned to approach racing like a game of billiards. If you bash the ball too hard, you get nowhere. As you handle the cue properly, you drive with more finesse.” — Juan Manuel Fangio

        There is also another legendary quote out there from the old days but I don’t remember who said it or how exactly it was said, it was something along the lines of “A race is getting to the finish line first in the slowest time possible”.

  17. Red Bull isn’t that bad, though. They won two races, they are leading both championships. Yeah, maybe they aren’t as consistent as Ferrari or Lotus, but Red Bull is not doing that bad at the moment. But still, they are complaining. I don’t think it’s because they are so arrogant that they want to win every race, but it’s because working with these tyres is not pleasant for the drivers, for the teams and for the fans.

    Besides I wouldn’t be so sure that by changing the tyres Pirelli is going to give Red Bull the championship. Actually, there’s nothing to suggest that. For all we know Mercedes could be the fastest.

    I understand that it’s not great for Ferrari and Lotus: they have done a very good job with 2013 spec tyres, and changing them might be regarded as unfair by someone, I get it, but we have a bigger problem, I think. Pirelli shouldn’t think about who wins the championship, it’s not their job. They have to balance this tyre degradation issue, because right now it’s not racing and it’s not even good for the show.

  18. Dan Harrison
    13th May 2013, 18:29

    I’m seriously considering ditching my Sky subscription. I think they could possibly face a case from Trading Standards for billing F1 as motor racing. They could get away with calling it motorsport. But it’s not racing. What we have in 2013 is a Degradation Derby. And to my mind, it’s a poor spectacle.

    I’ll still take an interest in what’s happening, of course, via websites and the Beeb and newspaper coverage. But F1 is definitely losing its appeal to me as a sporting contest. Sure, it’s an interesting technical challenge for engineers, but I’m finding it boring. To me, it’s as if F1 – in its desire to increase excitement – has done the equivalent in football of widening the goal so that we can see more goals per game. Sure, it ensures that you’re seeing the ball hit the back of the next much more and the end of boring 0-0 draws, but when your granny could score a hat trick every game then the gimmick has gone too far.

    I found myself during the Barcelona race wondering if someone would have the balls to ban all aero devices so that we could go back to driver versus driver, with real dicing. What I want to see is speed, bravery and racecraft triumph. Not tiptoeing round to keep the tyres in a workable temperature window, tricky as it may be. Perhaps I should just go and watch Formula Ford instead.

  19. I was bored to death by Sunday’s race but Will Buxton’s post-race commentary has started to change my mind.

    “What Ferrari did in Spain was to completely flip the script. Rather than going into the race and telling their drivers to hold back, they told them to push with everything they had. Four stops was always their intention and it caught everyone else off guard.”


    With the massive difference between qualifying pace and the conservative race pace we saw in Spain, it is not difficult to imagine that – if a driver pushed from start to finish and got tires whenever he needed them – more stops could have been possible.

    Maybe the ideal solution for Pirelli is not to change the tires (thereby opening the door for accusations) but to simply bring more of them. It might be a riot to watch the drivers constantly charging, setting faster and faster times, darting in for tires, and repeating the process. After all of these highly controlled races, a rubber-shredding manic run to the finish might be fun to watch.

    As I see it, simply bringing more tires would allow Pirelli to kill two birds with one stone. No bending to the will of one team or another and they give the fans what we have been missing – more flat-out racing.

    1. Not so sure. Buxton wasn’t driving the Ferrari, Alonso was. And Alonso says he was not driving anywhere near the limit. The data show he was several seconds off his fuel-corrected ideal time at all times. Ferrari was just the least-affected car. There is no case that teams could deal with the tires by just stopping a lot and going fast. If that were true then Mercedes would be dominating this season. They have up to .5s on the field in raw pace but got lapped. Im sure it crossed Brawn’s mind to put the hammer down and just keep stopping but your ability to make up 20 seconds in pace for every extra stop you make diminishes with more stops, because you have less time on the track to make the time.

      1. @dmw

        The issue with the pace of the field, and the Merc in particular, is that they immediately went into conservation mode. Buxton is right to point out that Ferrari bucked that trend and that that gave them a competitive advantage. If more teams follow Ferrari’s lead, the overly cautious approach might give way to better racing.

        1. Ferrari did not buck anything. Other teams stopped the same number of times and Alonso coasted just as much as others. The car was just relatively better. Buxton started an urban legend. Parking behind rosberg in stint 1 whike he creeped around like the mini train at the mall the kids ride was not conservation mode?

  20. The thing which seriously irritates me about the way Pirelli & especially Paul Hembrey are playing the tyre debate is that there making things out as if there are only 2 choices, The sort of extreme degredation we have now or the rock solid tyres of 2010.

    Its a false set of choices which completely ignores the big gap in the middle which I feel they should be aiming at.

    There’s also this ridiculous argument that anything other than what we have now would help Red Bull win the championship something I don’t think would be the case.

    I was also reading comments on AutoSport where he goes on about how they have been going this extreme since 2011 & have done nothing different this year which is clearly completely false when you actually go back & look at the tyres they had in 2011.

    Im sick & tired of hearing & reading Paul Hembrey trying to frame the debate as either this or 2010 & im sick of hearing him suggest that everyone who dislikes the current tyre situation must want to see processions in which Red Bull dominates.

    Stop treating us like idiots, We know there’s more than 2 choices, We know there’s a middle ground & I would suggest that middle ground is where most fans would like them to go.

    Lets get tyres which lose performance but still allow drivers to push hard & race, We had that in 2011 so its clearly possible & I don’t recall many complaining about the tyre effect that year, I at least preferred it to what we’ve had since.

    Im an Alonso fan & should have been thrilled with yesterdays race given he won, However for me everything about that race was unsatisfying & even Fernando’s passing Raikkonen for the lead (And eventually the win) left a sour taste in my mouth & was an unsatisfying thing to watch because it was obvious that Kimi never bothered to try & hold him off & basically just let him go (Something Kimi later confirmed).

    1. @stefmeister

      im sick of hearing him suggest that everyone who dislikes the current tyre situation must want to see processions in which Red Bull dominates.

      Correct me if I’m wrong but I don’t believe Pirelli have ever tried to justify the current tyres by saying it gives people a chance to beat Red Bull.

      1. @keithcollantine They are saying that if they change the tyres RBR will win, wich is the same:

        “Unless you all want us to give Red Bull the tyres to win the championship. It’s pretty clear. If we did that, there would be one team that would benefit and it would be them.

        So if they don´t want to changes the tyres just because of RBR is silly, to say the least. Yesterday race was boring and confusing. When Kimi say he doesn´t race Alonso because of tyres, Vettel dn´t defend againts Kimi because the same, Checho saids he shouldn´t have run in Q3 to save tyres, and Lewis is going backwards is something wrong with the sport.

        1. @celeste Yes I’ve just read that now and had come back to mention it!

          And no, I don’t think that is a very strong argument. It sounds more like them taking a swipe at some of the criticism they’ve had from the media.

          1. @keithcollantine I think Pirelli and specially Paul Hembery thinks to much of himself attacking RBR and not taking listening to other teams, drivers. He is not only saying changing the tyres will help RB but he is saying that it will “only help RB”.

            I think it is pretty clear. There is one team who will benefit from a change and that is them.”

            A tyre supplier shouldn´t have this much weight on the results, and when nobody is talking about the drives but about the tyres we know we are in trouble.

  21. Been a long time since I posted here but I need to remind some of the younger viewers that the sport has been dogged for decades with changes. If you are over 50 you will remember the aero advantage, over 40 the turbo era. Over 30 the auto everything seasons. The sport changes and those who lose out complain. This is not a game where the rules change to keep people happy. Everyone knew about the new tyres, only some modified the car to suit. F1 cars do not run at 100% and have not for a long time. Limited engines, gearboxes and the loss of T cars saw to that. The subject of complaint has changed, the sport has not.

  22. So by the Ferrari fans logic, RBR had all the tire issues all figured out in Bahrain and Ferrari was the team that had not designed their car appropriately for the tires. By the way Vettel was ahead by well over the 23 seconds required for a pit stop and could have finished there but decided to pit to ensure his tires would last.

    This is just extremely selective thinking colored by a recent win.

    The tires at the very least need to be made safe, as of now they are not.

  23. With these tyres you may as well not take part in qualy as grid position now means nothing. For years no one complained about the pole sitter winning races now it doesnt matter. Your better off sitting it out and saving tyres.

  24. The astounding irony being that Red Bull themselves are heavily responsible for current dissent among current F1 fans, in that no one wants to watch the same driver win everything at all times (i.e. the Schumacher era, go look at those plummeting ratings to see how well they liked it)

  25. Could someone please put up the closing laps of Monaco ’92 and educate some of these Johnny-come-lately RBR / Merc fans on why conserving tyres doesn’t mean poor racing !!

    1. That race had nothing to do with conserving tyres.

      In fact the hard compound they had back then meant they could go the full race without any pit stops with ease which is why it wasn’t uncommon to see people take that strategy.

  26. Tyres + Viral = TYRAL

    That’s where we are now in 2013, no matter how real or imagined. Driven by forces in and out of F1 it is now the lone defining subject of the season so far. Probably not as bad as the doomsayers and the Drivers & Constructors leader Red Bull make it out to be, but it’s now all that many of those covering F1 seem to want to talk about. Pirelli seems to add more fuel to the fire no matter what they explain or announce.

    As some wise folks have stated before, it is the same tires for all teams. Some teams have adapted and are racing better than others. Life goes on. Not complaining that people are discussing it. That’s what we do. The proportion has however, exploded and gone Tyral!

  27. Hysterics aside, the main issue with these tyres is that you simply cannot race on them. Yes you can win, but NOT by racing. If every one crawls around in a competition, somebody will still win. This is what a sport should be about.

    Ferrai did not race in Barcelona as claimed by so many people. Lotus did not race, Merc did not race, RBR did not race and McLaren did not race. Not only that, they did not even defend most of the time. This is why the tyres are bad on so many grounds.

    This is also not just an issue about degradation, but the fact that no matter the compound, they start to degrade immediately – after the first lap; irrespective of whether you push or not – again cue the constant tiptoeing on them. Surely, that cannot be right.

    But the biggest nub of it is Pirelli’s incompetence; as they simply do not understand the tyres themselves. All their predictions regarding the tyres have been wrong. From the working temp range, to how long they should last, to how many pit-stops expected on them. The construction is also shoddy, as evidenced by the number of delaminations – 7 so far this year (and we are only in the 5th race. Cue Hembery with yet another excuse again. This time, it is that the cars are using them harsher than expected. He gave a reason for extreme degradation in testing, in Barcelona, he gave another reason.

    Yes, they are the same for everyone, but this does not make them a good thing. If you tied every footballer legs together and asked them to play, it still would not be a good thing, just because “its the same for everyone”? Yes, it’ll make for a good spectacle, but that’s about it. Or am i misssing something here?

    Surely, F1 better than this.

  28. by the number of sudden tyre d-lamination’s on the weekend it seemed to me that Pirelli are headed in the opposite direction or is it a QA blunder? DiResta blowing a tyre down pit straight, I dont understand how that’s not a safety concern right there….if it had been Michelin they probably would have pulled out :)

  29. Everybody is given the same tyres, if these people claim to be the greatest teams, engineers, drivers, crewmembers, etc in the world then shouldn’t they be able wrap their heads around what isn’t really a problem in the first place? Maybe the people that travel around with this circus really aren’t the “best in the world”…… Or then again maybe it’s just a case of smart people looking for a complex solution to a simple issue & just simply over-thinking it.

  30. First of all tyre are same for everyone. No one is getting an advantage over it. Its just your car design. every one knew how the tyres will be when testing began. If Kimi can manage a podium with 1 less pitstop it means they have a better car on tyres which is some what a Genius car design. Ferrari are doing ok too.
    So i say Redbull Pls stop this rubbish about tyres.. So sad your car design it not the best.
    But i do understand 80 odd pitstops are too much for 66 laps. But then again Cataluniya always hard on tyres..
    So many teams have so many strategies in the race. If we look closely about the race no one was sure who is goin to win the race until they all finished their last stops.. so in a way its good…
    NOTE- This is just my point of view only…

  31. Pirelli’s have done a fantastic job of producing tyres which had changed the dynamics of a F1 car. Its a challenge for the engineers to not only build a car around its aerodynamics but also its tyres. Now after its three years stint in F1(recently),Pirelli are facing its hardest criticism.But thats understandable because with the tyre structure failures with Merc,FI and I guess even I saw similar failure in the last race with one of the Torro Rosso’s(if I am not wrong). But I am amazed how the RedBull’s are so much vocal with this tyres? We have seen a Bridgestone era where an almost a race distance could be performed with a single set of tyres & now a Pirelli era where tyres are as important as any other development of the car.
    It is easy to produce a tyre that can last an entire race distance and you could then see a Red Bull / Ferrari/ Merc/ McLaren winning each a every race fare and square. But with the current situation of tyres it is different and thats why its interesting. But yeah I believe the structural failure is a real embarrassment for Pirelli’s,that compromises safety. But else its quite ok with how it is.
    Criticizing is not the way they are doing a job what they are told to do thats it. Its ethical or unethical is upto the FIA/FOM the teams. Red Bull and Merc should have been smart enough to atleast consider the tyres while designing the car. They were not unknown to the situation,were they? If Pirelli changes it entire tyre structure and make it more durable then why didn’t they do it at the start of the last season? Now teams who have considered tyres as a major part of there car development is sure to either gain or loose which is an unkonwn. Hence I think it would be very wrong to take such step now.

  32. “It is a bit bizarre – unless you all want us to give tyres to Red Bull to help them win the championship, which appears to be the case.”

    This is really rediculous. So we must do everything to avoid the best and the fastest being helped. What if Nike had the same philosophy? “Usain Bolt wins every sprint with two fingers in the nose. We don’t want that, therefore we make shoes that fall apart when someone puts too much pressure on it. Since Usain Bolt puts the most pressure on the shoes, he will suffer the most, therefore the sprint is exciting again.”

    I am certainly no fan of Vettel and RedBull, but if they are indeed the fastest then they should win.

  33. You know, heres a strange concept. If there is a genuine problem, then fix the problem, don’t worry about how it appears to the rest of the media.

    There seems to be a problem that is creeping in with delaminating tyres, so start there. If Pirelli feel that they missed the mark on the durability of the tyre, then fix that.

    But that is such a cop out to say we are too scared to do anything because it might be considered beneficial for one team and not the other.

  34. I’ve seen a lot of reference to red bull having more downforce than their rivals this year, but I have seen nothing other than speculation that suggests that is the case. Out of everyone arguing ferrari and lotus are only kinder on tyres due to lower downforce, do any of you actually have any mechanical or aerodynamic engineering experience? Please explain to me how you all know how much downforce each car produces, and how exactly this affects these pirelli tyres? Also, while were here, can you explain to me exactly what the different suspension solutions of the top teams does to tyre performance? I’m sure the geometry, set up, and driver input is more important to tyre wear and warm up than aero, but ill gladly listen to anyone who can explain how it isn’t. Please provide links to reputable sources, don’t spew unfounded claims :)

  35. In Barcelona 2011 Vettel and Alonso both did 4 stops.
    Alosno had a great start, lost out in the end due to his care and tyre deg.
    Vettel ended up winning.

    Where was Bernie then??? Y din redbull complain then?

    This PURE favouritism…

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