Good rating for British GP despite tyre chaos

2013 British Grand Prix

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A spate of dramatic tyre failures nearly drove race director Charlie Whiting to red-flagging the British Grand Prix.

But it went on and a Safety Car interruption towards the end of the race turned a 90 minute F1 showcase into a ten-lap touring car-style sprint to the flag.

That allowed the unfortunate Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa – two of the drivers who suffered punctures – to put on great displays to score well-deserved points.

Tyres have been a constant talking point in 2013 and the effect they had on the Silverstone race. But there was enough racing action up and down the field to keep many viewers entertained.

F1 Fanatic readers rated the race at 7.39 out of 10, ranking it fourth of the eight races up to that point in 2013. But opinions were strongly divided over the tyre problems and safety implications.

It wasn’t enjoyable watching while fearing for the drivers’ safety. Whatever the reason, it’s simply not acceptable to have four high speed tyre failures in one races. Questions have to be asked and solutions have to be found.

However… it was a very good race. Fantastic recoveries from Hamilton and Webber, a good win from Rosberg, canny drive from Alonso and unlucky for Raikkonen. In fact, the driving was genuinely excellent and the last few laps were thrilling.

An eight. Would have been a nine without the tyre farce.

If you’re a neutral, it had almost everything – even some unwanted bits with the tyres. Last ten laps were gripping.

Unsurprisingly the tyre problems provoked some strong criticism:

A fantastic, dramatic race that was due to, and also almost paradoxically marred by the dangerous tyre issues throughout the Grand Prix.

It was enthralling to watch but I can say honestly I hope such a race is never repeated, there are only so many catastrophic tyre failures that F1 can have before someone is injured or worse.

The race itself was actually quite good, lots of overtaking and a great finish.

But there can be no argument that Pirelli turned the British Grand Prix and F1 as a whole into a complete farce today. They have created tyres that are unable to cope with the loading of one of the finest race tracks on the calendar; they are not fit for purpose.

But not from everyone – this reader may just get a Christmas card from Paul Hembery:

I gave it a ten, for one main reason: unpredictability.

Imagine if you will, that the tyres were indestructible and everyone was able to make it on one stop. Everyone would have strung out throughout the race and the only thing of any interest would have been Vettel’s gearbox going out.

But with the drivers puncturing their tyres on the kerbs, there was no point in the race where any position was safe.

It was a throwback to the races of the eighties and nineties when cars weren’t nearly as reliable as now and any car had the potential to break at any time.

Most of the field managed to not damage their tyres, so I wouldn’t be so quick to blame Pirelli here. We all know the teams are already going to the edge on their own, and this time some of them went too far over the edge.

With the focus on tyres, rather less was said about DRS, though there were mixed views on how well the addition of a second zone worked:

The racing wasn’t actually bad, the last few laps were great. The second DRS zone was too much. I said last year that the DRS on Wellington straight was almost perfect, there was no need to put another zone.

I don’t think we can overlook the problem with the tyres. Five punctures are not acceptable. It’s embarrassing for the sport. Terrible, terrible day for Formula One.

One viewer thought Michael Bay has a new rival in Bernie Ecclestone:

Following the success of movies like "Watch for These Tyres", "Save Fuel" and "Don’t Use KERS", now comes the critically acclaimed masterpiece "Don’t Use Kerbs", written and directed by Bernard C. Ecclestone.

? My opinion: The ending was ok, but in great parts it reminded me of "Man of Steel", with all the stuff blowing up. At least CGI explosions looked decent. I gave it a six on IMDb.

But if the 2013 British Grand Prix was a film, this reader have it a poor review:

I’ve never had more mixed feeling about a grand prix.

First of all, we’ve had an amazing finish and probably the best last seven laps this season, I can agree with that.

However, it was all due to a timely safety car and it can be strongly related to some people nailing the strategy for the last stop (Alonso, Webber) and others making a mess out of it (Raikkonen). Yes, Rosberg, Webber and Alonso deserve all the credit for driving their hearts out and so do Massa and Hamilton, but let’s face it, it was still somewhat artificial. It wasn’t sheer racing that brought us this ending, it was a just a decent finale determined by an altogether chaotic race. […]

I can’t find many positives in this joke of a race in which we had no indication whatsoever about anyone’s real pace (again, but for all the different reasons), in which the tyres ruined way too many potential outcomes and which was downright dangerous even by touring car or NASCAR standards.

This wasn’t a brilliant movie altogether. It was a mediocre comedy, but with the ending we all wanted to see. Just like five decent minutes out of a two-hour long movie don’t make it a good one, seven laps out of fifty-two don’t make this a good race.

Finally, one person had an idea which would create a lot more work for me!

I think there should be a ‘rate the lap’ feature so we can rate each lap individually as we watch the race.

Previous rate the race results

2013 British Grand Prix

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Image © Lotus/LAT

20 comments on “Good rating for British GP despite tyre chaos”

  1. I certainly think it was a very memorable race, so its probably good its gotten a good rating.

  2. But there can be no argument that Pirelli turned the British Grand Prix and F1 as a whole into a complete farce today. They have created tyres that are unable to cope with the loading of one of the finest race tracks on the calendar; they are not fit for purpose.

    I wonder if @bleeps_and_tweaks (among others) is willing to reconsider his position in light of what we have since learned about the way the teams were using the tyres. It’s pretty clear that the improper use of the tyres and the way the teams ignored Pirelli’s advice on setup – despite a previous incident of a similar nature – in the name of improving performance played a large part in the tyre failures. Whether or not the tyres would have survived if they had been used properly is a question that cannot be answered, but the effect of such deliberate and blatant misuse cannot be ignored.

    1. Did they suddenly start using the tyres wrong? No. So no that’s not it obviously?

      What else changed? Oh wait Pirelli changed the structure of the tyres just ahead of the race, but that couldn’t have had anything to do with them exploding of course.

  3. Component failures make a race exciting because they are so unforseen. I just don’t like the fact that they have to be tyres blowing up, I’d rather have an engine blow up every now and then again, just like in the past.

  4. I personally thought it was the best race of the year though it was only another tyre failure away from being a farce. I understand why people voted accordingly, what does the rating look like if you get rid of the sizeable amount of 1s?

    1. Yes I suspect the RMS average may be comparibly very high for this race..

  5. it was an average race until the last safety car phase, after that, for a couple of laps, until the end, it was really memorable

  6. I personally gave it a 4 (The least I’ve given). The ending was exiting, but I just thought the whole race was ridiculous.
    It was memorable and unexpected, but for the wrong reasons, I think.

  7. “Good rating for British GP due to tyre chaos”

    it added a frisson of tension to the whole thing.

  8. I think I gave it a 2, with the only positive being that it kept the WDC open. Anything else was ridiculous and had nothing to do with racing:

    – Leader drops to back due to tyre blow (this is annoying as it passed the lead to someone less deserving)
    – 2 more cars have blown tyres
    – safety car comes out which hurts some and helps others (I hate safety cars!)
    – Leader retires with blown engine (see above)
    – safety car comes out, which some use to pit (see above)
    – frantic last 7 laps with super easy overtakes by people on fresh rubber compared to those on old tyres (hailed as superb racing by many but frankly it was very predictable)

    End result: Top finishers mostly in positions that flatter their performance as those positions were gained mostly by blown tyres/engines of others, and luck in two safety car phases.

  9. ‘Good rating for British GP despite tyre chaos’

    um, the tyre chaos was the main contributing factor to it having a good rating!

  10. i don’t understand anything. a good rating, when a lot of fans were saying it should being red flaged.
    Then at the next gp the drivers menacing with a boycott, and the fans were not outraged!!!
    I must be from another generation, but i respect less and less these prima donnas, that travel in private jets, and want to sell us that f1 is still a dangerous, but when tyres blow up, they panic.

    1. Do you have something against the drivers not wanting to die?

      1. i have something against drivers not wanting to race, when there is not a real danger to die.
        I have something against selling the sport as dangerous, when the last death was 20 years ago.
        i am against wise people fooling the fans, and robbing them every time they go to a circuit, to watch an event worth no more than 100 dolars, and charing up to 500.
        i can keep going…

        1. So when Massa was nearly killed in 2009, that wasn’t dangerous? Doing 160mph two inches from steel barriers isn’t dangerous? Grosjean nearly taking Alonso’s head off at Spa last year wasn’t dangerous? Getting hit in the head by 6lbs of steel-belted rubber at 190mph isn’t dangerous?

          Motorsport is dangerous. This is a plain and simple fact. To even dare to suggest otherwise is, to me and I’m sure to all those victims and their friends and families, is grossly offensive.

        2. The last death in the sport was not even close to 20 years ago. It was in Canada this year kowa.

    2. I’ve heard of this other “prima donna” who was also concerned for the safety of his peers.

      He was a world champion. In the year 1969.

      1. when the sport was dangerous, and he had a point. drivers dying every year.
        $0 years on, you keep talking like if it was dangerous yet.
        Listen to me, and believe me when i tell you. f1 is not dangerous anymore.

  11. I think the race was also rated quite high because Vettel retired
    Had Vettel won, it would’ve got 4 or 5 out of 10 by most people who would moan at the tyres rather than gloss over the blowouts because Vettel didn’t win this time

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