Ferrari “paid a big price” when tyres were changed

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In the round-up: Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo says Ferrari suffered because of the mid-season change in tyre construction.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Luca di Montezemolo: ‘Fernando Alonso’s season? 8 out of 10’ (CNN)

“The first half of the season we won two races, so Ferrari was far more competitive. This is a fact… when the tyres were changed we paid a big price.”

Brazilian GP – Farewell Felipe (Ferrari)

“It was always my dream to drive for Ferrari and I did it for ten years, eight of them as a race driver. Actually, I had a contract with Ferrari even before then, when I was just a kid really.”

Williams form buoys Bottas for 2014 (Autosport)

“Others have developed their cars much more than ours during the whole season, but we can still get it in the points.”

Lifting the lid on F1’s inner workings (BBC)

CVC co-founder Donald Mackenzie: “It’s been an extremely difficult investment almost from start to finish. It was constant crisis and firefighting.”

Mallya stubborn on driver decision

“Everybody knows I make the decision at the last minute – well not the last minute – I make the decision after the Force India Christmas party which means in December.”

Brazilian Grand Prix Betting: Vettel’s rivals need rain for chance (Unibet)

My Brazilian Grand Prix preview for Unibet.


Comment of the day

@Hotbottoms on Lewis Hamilton’s demanding radio messages:

I found this kind of funny:

Lap 13
Bonnington: "OK Lewis, we do need to manage these tyres, we’ve still got some laps to do on them."
Hamilton: "That’s what I’m doing, man. Let me focus."

Lap 14
Bonnington: "Traction was at 1,400 so we do need to manage them, otherwise we’re on a two-stop."
Hamilton: "I’m trying to manage them, man. I’m trying to."

Lap 31
Hamilton: "OK, you need to give me some feedback, man. About my tyres, temperatures. Do I need to push more? Less?"

From the forum

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On this day in F1

Felice Bonetto lost his life on this day 60 years ago. He had come to prominence four years earlier and started two rounds of the inaugural world championship in 1950. Alfa Romeo signed him for the following season but despite taking a podium finish at Monza, shared with Giuseppe Farina, he soon moved on.

Maserati gave him a full season campaign in 1953 and Bonetto took another shared podium, this time with Jose Froilan Gonzalez at Zandvoort. But he lost his life after the end of the season when he crashed during the Carrera Panamericana road rally in South America.

Image © Ferrari/Ercole Colombo

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69 comments on “Ferrari “paid a big price” when tyres were changed”

  1. CODT sums my feelings towards Hamilton’s team radio quite well. I’m still baffled by that.

    “This is a fact… when the tyres were changed we paid a big price.”

    Weren’t they already behind Red Bull and Mercedes before Hungary or am I missing something? since Spain it’s been up and down for Ferrari, Lotus and Merc. Merc had it’s party piece between Monaco and Hungary, and then it was Lotus time to shine a bit more. And they both had the tyres changed aswell, even Lotus who were doing just as well as Ferrari at the begining of the season.

    Of course the tyres made a massive difference, as Sauber demostrated. But Ferrari weren’t that much of a challenger after Spain, really…

    1. OmarR-Pepper (@)
      21st November 2013, 0:20

      Weren’t they already behind Red Bull and Mercedes before Hungary or am I missing something?

      They won 2 races at the beginning of the season with the “original” tyres. (BTW I don’t like it when people refer to the current tyres as “2012 tyres”).
      But also remember 2012 when many teams won the first races? It’s quite normal, so, that the season gets more winners when teams are still understanding the tyre management. Once the dust settles down, we have just 2 or 3 teams winning. (and others whining)

      1. Many teams had problems, but the tires did not changed a lot, I mean, the surface contact did not change, only the structure one did. And, if they noted a bad effect becouse of that, they had enough time to fix it, and they trayed but with very bad results, son it was not the change, it was they bad work. It is only a bad excuse.

      2. There wasn’t anything normal about last year nor this year as it relates to tires. Last year had what…8 winners in the first 8 races. Not complaining but I just wish it was more due to actual competition rather than the ‘tire lottery’ as it became known as. This year the tires were a joke obviously…delaminating, eventually exploding, and needing changing mid-season.

        I can’t blame a driver for being frustrated when most of the time he’s just monitoring tires and not pushing on them. I’m sure they’d rather race than just drive.

      3. well redbull were whining all the time even when they were leading before tyre change.

        1. Yeah that’s how bad the tires were…the tires were still a big problem even for the team that was leading.

      4. No. In 2012 Pirelli also selected much more conservative selection of tyres for second part of the season, compare to the beginning where we had different winners.

    2. @fer-no65, Let’s see how they luck-out next year when they get another spin of Pirellis Wheel-of-Fortune.

      1. @hohum I see what you did there…

        but on a serious note: the compounds should be relatively conservative considering the other changes in store…

        1. Pirelli have already said the tyres will be just that. They have also asked the teams to put their requests for tyre performance on paper, because they felt that some team principals forgot what they had originally asked for in 2010, and so were effectively criticising Pirelli for producing exactly what was asked of them.

      2. +1000 ….. ots pretty clear dat ferrari luckd in … how else cud they manage to develop a car around tires dat were supplied only by d year end for testing !

        1. Not this again! They had all the data they needed, they knew exactly that the tires would be even less durable than before, yet Red Bull didn’t do a very good job.

          And hasn’t Red Bull lucked into regulations commanding the best aero long enough already?

    3. Re: COTD

      These were different sets of tyres. It was quite obvious that they were in tyre saving mode on the medium compound. That wasn’t necessarily the case for the prime tyre.

  2. Those comments by Hamilton did annoy me when I heard them, particularly when Brawn said that they were having to learn to deal with it. But to be fair, in his post-race interview he laughed it off and admitted he was difficult and perhaps needed to work on his communication. I think he said the words ‘my poor engineer’. I guess during the stint when the first 2 messages were played he should have just made it clear that he wanted the bare minimum information for the remainder of that stint. It must be difficult having somebody jabbering in your ear when the information basically tells you to keep doing the same thing.

    1. Hey @matt90, if you check my Twitter feed and that of MercedesF1’s you’ll see an exchange where I ask them about the relationship b/w Hamilton and his engineers, given what the brief radio messages might convey, and they took pains and were quick to point out that the radio msgs are but snippets of brief exchanges, and that the relationship b/w Lewis and the engineers is fine (“great”, actually) and that one shouldn’t read into them (the radio snippets).

      MERCEDES AMG F1 Verified account
      ‏@MercedesAMGF1 | 6:09 PM – 17 Nov 13
      “@joepabike Relationship is great with his engineering team. Radio snippets are only snippets. Don’t read too much into them.”

      Joe Papp ‏
      @joepabike | 17 Nov
      “@MercedesAMGF1 what’s relationship really like b/w @LewisHamilton & race engineer? radio snippets =/= their actual chemistry? #AustinDebrief”

      1. maarten.f1 (@)
        21st November 2013, 6:37

        @joepa Would you honestly expect them to have said anything different?

        If things remain unchanged for next year, I’d say the relationship is good enough. If Bonnington is replaced next year, then the relationship hasn’t been good enough.

        1. Would you honestly expect them to have said anything different?

          @maarten-f1 – honestly, yes. I wouldn’t expect them to flat-out lie about a falling out, had that occurred – dissemble of obfuscate, maybe. But straight-up lie about it…no, I wouldn’t expect that, especially since I think Lewis would probably call out the engineers as dooshes if that was how he felt, long before the PR staff could try to intervene.

          And now we have Lewis himself saying the relationship is great:

          A frustrated Lewis Hamilton says his tetchy U.S. GP radio messages were misconstrued
          “I have a great relationship with my engineer,” Lewis insists

    2. Of course, it’s not broadcast immediately, but at least when the first message was played he was pretty busy trying to keep Webber (?) behind him, IIRC. So I can see him being annoyed at getting a tyre-saving message at that precise time (by no means unique to Hamilton either) vs. wanting feedback at a quieter period.

    3. For what’s it worth, I had the opportunity to drive an Indy-style car around a track a few laps a few months ago (best birthday present yet) and with regard to radio, I hadn’t realized that getting a message in your ear does not sound like it does on TV, like a air traffic controller is speaking into a headset or something. The car is incredibly loud, the wind noise is horrendous, it’s vibrating sometimes so you can hardly see. And this was needless to say not remotely as loud and violent as an F1 car I’m sure. In order to get over the din, the radio was like someone holding a megaphone next to your head. It’s incredibly unnerving and loud. Of course, they get paid the big bucks and all that. But I think maybe people don’t realize the driver is not hearing it as we hear it. I would definitely want it to a minimum.

  3. I find mallya’s stubborn-ness about this whole late decision thing disgusting, does he have no respect for his drivers whatsoever? Force india are going to become a career killing team, holding drivers till christmas and then showing them the door not just out of the team, but out of f1 too.

    1. But how will he get pretty girls to come to the party if he doesn’t have any F1 drivers there.

      1. Because he has (had) a squillion dollars in the bank. And a yacht.

    2. Yeah I agree. If Sutil or Di Resta get the boot the chances of them finding a drive then are if not zero, very close to it.

      1. No, it isnt. The line is way too big. Just a few weeks ago Kimi got sick and Lotus had a pool full of drivers to pick one…

    3. @naz3012 forget about the drivers, I doubt a team can find a decent pair of hands after xmas, when virtually every other contract has been signed.

      If everyone secures the Hulkenbergs and Bottas, and even the Massas, then Force India is left alone with the Sutils… and we know how lame that is !

      1. Alot of the reasons why FI does it this way is that in recent years they have had always good options despite making the decisions so late.

        I think there are several financial reasons why Force india does it this way. First of all they are not going to even consider getting top talent who also want top salary. FI wants to keep the cost of the drivers as low as possible.

        Also in late december FI will have massive benefit when making deal with the drivers. They are the only good team left with a seat or two. And there are usually a good number of drivers still available who are a lot more eagier to get little less money if they just get a seat in FI. This mean cheaper drivers for FI.

        Force india are still such a good team that if given the choise any driver will choose FI over pretty much everything else that is still available in late december. That late in the season everybody who doesn’t yet have a seat would like nothing more than the FI seat. Other things left are the pay2drive caterhams and marussias which are career killer teams. Or to go back to gp2, sportscars or dtm whatever.

        If there are two teams who want a driver at all cost the driver salary goes up. If there are 2 drivers going after one seat then the driver salary goes down. FI knows this very well.

    4. If he had a driver who he absolutely wants, he would have signed him straight away. This just shows that Malaya is not happy with performance of his current line-up.

      So if drivers did their job, they would have been signed. I know it sounds harsh, specially having drivers like Chilton and Gutierezz in a field. But that’s how it is in today’s F1.

    5. @naz3012 Really? This is Vijay Mallya, the man who didn’t pay staff at his beleaguered airline for (as some reports indicate) almost a year. Think he cares about whether a couple of racing driver knows if he has a job before Christmas?

      1. I suspect that the decisions are already made and that the key players know. Contracts are already probably with lawyers. Many years ago I worked briefly with a team principle when a famous driver was claimed to be “not signed” by a top team in the press literally months after the deal had been done. There are probably commercial reasons for the “decision” delay although goodness knows what they are. I never found out then and don’t know now.

  4. Oh! Please, Monty!. If Ferrari paid a big price because of tire changes, why are Lotus so strong in the second part?

    The wind tunnel excuse is getting old. Perhaps they will come up with a new engine regulations excuse next year. The only season in the recent past when Ferrari got the development right was in 2010. They were very strong post the break and closed the gap to RB to give Alonso a chance at the WDC.

    All other seasons, it has been one man carrying the limp horse.

    1. Winners and losers on Piellis wheel of fortune.

      1. Well, no. That’s not right @HoHum. With any tyre chance some teams will be luckier than others in that it will suit their car for sure, but that’s reality, not Pirelli. If you can explain how Pirrelli can change a tyre but not alter who it favors, tell me, because my understanding of tyre characteristics just can’t fathom it.

        I mean, If it’s the tyre change that really hurt Ferrari then why between Belgium and Singapore did they bag a whole heap of points? Surely just after the change Ferrari’s results would have been at their worst if this is true.

        No, the real answer is development, Ferrari has fallen further behind the longer the season has gone. They haven’t kept up.

        1. @mike and @hohum, the tire change did affect Ferrari. But you make your own fortunes. Their inability to develop the car is the big price they paid. Not the tires.

          Monty should understand that they are wasting a driver at his prime by giving him a dog of a car to compete. Any other day, they would have been OK. But with RB pulling out all the stops to be competitive, Ferrari and McLaren are being left behind.

        2. @mike,@evered7, Absolutely, I was more trying to point out that Lotus and RBR seemed to have been lucky winners while Ferrari, and FI seem to have been unlucky losers. Sure there is room to improve the way the car uses the tyres but it all seems a bit hit and miss, take McLaren and Mercedes they both have the expertise and the budget but one week the tyres are melting, the next they can’t get them up to temperature, if it was just a matter of sound engineering I think they would have cracked it by now.

          1. I ran some numbers to compare RBR’s and Ferrari’s evolution (using Vettel and Alonso’s point scorings) for 2012 and 2013. Not saying it means a lot, but it give an insight as for the trends.

            – In 2013, up until and including Silverstone, Vettel scored 16,5 points per race. After Silverstone he has been scoring at 24 points per race
            – In 2013, up until and including Silverstone, Alonso scored13.875 points per race. After Silverstone he has been scoring at 11.6 points per race

            Now contrast this with 2012:
            – In 2012, up until and including Silverstone, Vettel scored11.11 points per race. After Silverstone he scored 16.45 points per race
            – In 2012, up until and including Silverstone, Alonso scored14.33 points per race. After Silverstone he scored 13.54 points per race

            Following from the above:
            – In 2012, post-Silverstone RBR/Vettel improved their scorings by 48%
            – In 2013, post-Silverstone RBR/Vettel improved their scorings by 45%

            Contrast to Ferrari/Alonso:
            – In 2012, post-Silverstone Ferrari/Alonso’s scorings were 5.5% lower
            – In 2013, post-Silverstone Ferrari/Alonso’s scorings were 16.5% lower

            These numbers show:
            – RBR/Vettel’s progress pre and post tyre changes corresponds very well to that of 2012. Does this suggest the tyre change didn’t really have that great of an impact on them? Could it suggest that their development curve has been the deciding factor, like it was in 2012?
            – Ferrari/Alonso’s progress pre and post tyre changes has taken a nosedive with regards to 2012. Which could suggest that either their development rate has actually been worse than in 2012, or the tyre changes really did affect them a lot.

            I know there are more factors to performance but I still thought it was interesting to do this exercise.

          2. @hohum

            Getting a new job you want is “lucky”. However, luck won’t have caused that result.

            Luck is not the cause of Ferrari’s misfortune. You can say they have not been lucky, but that is of their own doing.

    2. Ok,agreed that the reason for Ferrari not winning was that they could not develop their car in the second half,
      BUT with the tyre changed it did give a massive edge to the nearest rivals(at that time) RED bull then,
      they were struggling in china,spain etc w.r.t tyres.
      So if didn’t hinder Ferrari’s progress, it did boost RBR’s march. It sure did.

      1. Totally agree with @hohum on this. It’s been too much of a lottery…too much beyond the normal type of car development/tire adaptation concept that the teams have to deal with. I think this season has been one to lay the least amount of blame than ever on teams who were less able to win a lottery of lucking into the occasional hookup of the tires, particularly before they were changed, and then particularly BECAUSE they were changed mid-season in a highly contentious and abnormal way.

  5. To be fair to Luca, I think he’s correct in that the tyre change didn’t suit Ferrari as it did some other teams. In the article he puts the blame squarely at his own front door – Ferrari simply didn’t develop the car correctly, where as other teams with a lesser budget such as Lotus did a far better job, and Red Bull probably with a comparable budget were clearly on top of developments throughout the season too.

  6. Paul Sainsbury
    21st November 2013, 2:47



    The US GP was the first I have been able to watch on TV since Hungary, because I work on a cruise ship, and terrestrial television in the USA shows very few races. I was horrified by what I saw, the ‘tyre management’ seems no better than earlier in the season, when I was watching all of the races. One can hardly blame Hamilton for being exasperated, he had Webber in a MUCH faster car trying to pass him, and an engineer in his ear telling him to ‘look after his tyres’.

    Yes, I understand it is ‘the same for everyone’, but what that means is ‘awful’ for everyone, in particular real racing fans who want to see racers racing.

    How did we get to this? 32 years I have watched f1, never missed a race unless it was work related, been to 22 races all over Europe and spent thousands of pounds following what has been a huge passion. The current WWF farce just makes me very, very sad. I wonder how Gilles, Ayrton and Ronnie would have reacted to constantly receiving orders in their ears to slow down? I suspect they would have pretty unamused, as am I , and as all fans of RACING should be.

    1. No it wasn’t the best race this year by a long shot, but it was a ONE STOP race for just about everyone. I don’t care what era you might go back to, but any time a team is running 1 stop, chances are the tyres needed some amount of conservation. The 2 stop option was always on the table for anyone who wanted to push the whole way.

      2013 is not fun, I agree. But its just a small step (tyre tweak) from 2012 which was very good.

      1. @gitanes, I disagree with you and comiserate with Paul. It doesn’t matter if the teams are trying to get 7 laps from the supersoft, 12 laps from the soft, 20 laps from the medium or 30 laps from the hards, the result is always the same, all you hear from the engineers is ” slow down, look after your tyres” – “drop back, 2 second gap” – ” We’re not racing him, let him go” – ” Thats perfect, don’t worry about being passed” and all the other sorry excuses for not racing.

        1. Tyre management has always been present, it’s just that now we get to hear the pit-to-car messages we know more about it.

          This board just proves that you can please all of the people all of the time (or indeed any of the people looking at this)

          1. @nvherman, not true, absolutely definitely there was no tyre management in the racing during the re-fuelling era, nor the grooved tyre era that followed, nor during the era of qualifying tyres that preceeded refuelling, during the pit-stop free era occasionaly, on rarely used tracks a canny driver with local knowledge would use tyre management to advantage, only proving how unusual it was.

      2. But there has been just as much of this utterly ridiculous tyre management when we have had 2/3 & even 4-stop races.

        Look at Barcelona a 4-stop races for most that had some of the most ridiculous tyre management of the year.

        This year has been utterly boring because everyone’s just cruising around in pace management mode for 90% of the race & sadly its now the same in GP2.
        In GP2 you used to get a full race of near constant racing action, Now you get 90% of the race with everyone managing there tyres & then the final 10% of the race when people start pushing a bit more you see who’s tyres are in the best condition.
        And the Sunday morning race is even worse.

        Pirelli’s crappy tyres have utterly killed the racing in GP2 as well as F1 the past 2 years.

    2. We got “to this” because everyone lost their collective minds at Canada 2010, and the FIA took a bloody fan survey of all things way too seriously.

  7. In other news Chilton is closing in on a drive for Marussia, maybe next monday he’ll miraculously reach the team for a renewal, it just needs to reach for the bank first.

    1. I hope Marussia uses his money to some good, he is horrible and definitely not worth being called F1 driver.

  8. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    21st November 2013, 6:23

    Hopefully the tyres next year will be a lot more durable and have a much larger operating window, because the drivers need to be able to push on them without trashing them in 3 corners. They’ve been simply too fragile this year. It’s destroyed the racing this year. People say DRS is the killer, but I don’t buy that, I think the Tyres are the real culprit. Niether are good, but the tyres are worse.

    Anyway, hoping for a wild Brazilian GP as is so often the case, and hopefully a much more entertaining 2014 season after this year, which was rather akin to a hangover after the amazing 2912 season.

    1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      21st November 2013, 6:25

      “2912 season

      *2012 :/

      1. @topercheese21

        the amazing 2912 season

        Yeah, that one, in the adaptive polymorphic era, with their 3000 bhp bionic water-powered engines (the only problem with those was that bubble sound). Great times indeed :)

        1. @spoutnik Ah yes, the old 3000bhp bionic water-powered engines from 2912. Shame Vettel won every race in a great season that saw Michael Schumacher make his 88th comeback…

          1. Ah yes…back when water was only $1000 per liter…

  9. You can scoff at the idea of needing to keep all of the minor details, including the little eccentricities, in order to preserve the blazing talent of Hamilton, that a preservationist, reverent nod of acceptance is poorly justified in this arena of perfection. However, why would the team want him to change? To save Bonnington’s nerves whilst risking a corruption of that rich vein of form that Hamilton has demonstrated, if a little sporadically, throughout his career? Within Lewis Hamilton is a level of performance completely unreachable to every driver on the grid, so operation “Hamilton appeasement” is just about as worthwhile an exploit for Mercedes as strapping heaps of downforce to the W05. For me, Hamilton goes into 2014 as the title favourite, especially with some durable Pirellis and a highly developed W05. If Mercedes and Hamilton can refine their relationship over the winter, or at least to Hamilton’s satisfaction, then it really will be all eyes on car #3 come Australia.

    1. I agree that a little “Hamilton appeasement” can go a long way, and that he, by all accounts, will potentially be a real threat next year, such has been the expectations of the factory Merc. But I’m not convinced the relationship needs much refining beyond that which will come naturally as the relationship ages and work on the project continues.

      I think it is just as worthwhile an exploit as finding heaps of downforce, for LH to ensure he doesn’t take something off his own game with self-destructive off-track distractions, which hopefully are in the past, and of which the team nonetheless might have to be wary given the potential he has shown for that.

      1. I agree, that relationship will develop and refine naturally and needs no over analysis, as would’ve probably been the case at McLaren had he given conflicting radio messages. I again agree that Hamilton needs to simplify his off-track life, and try to prioritize whether he gets a bigger high from winning a WDC or from being “hip-hop Hamilton”. Fact: Nicole Scherzinger is a bigger obstacle to a Hamilton win than Sebastian Vettel.

        1. Ah but to be able to negotiate THOSE curves…

          1. Yes, it is comforting to know that there is a thrill to rival the first sector at Suzuka…

        2. Hell yeah to both of your points!

  10. I find the comments of Donald Mackenzie in court in saying that he had been “sold a pup”. How can he claim that Ecclestone oversold the business due to “ncertainty over the sport’s long-term viability and marketability given the lack of a commercial agreement “.

    Pretty much all of this information was in the public domain, the in-fighting and breakaway threats had been public for years and any follower of F1 or motorsports was aware of them. A quick Google search would have told you all of that was going on. Does he really expect us to believe that an experienced buyer of businesses failed to carry out any due diligence at all and simply took Ecclestones word that everything was hunky-dory?

    And if it was such a mess under Ecclestone’s years of stewardship surely the first thing they would have done to turn the business around was get rid of Bernie and put someone else in to sort it out.

    It is clear that this is a real stretch of the truth to make it look like he bought a bad business and magically made it successful. They knew exactly what they were getting into – yes it was a mess but there was a huge profit which made the hassle more than worth it.

    1. Yes, it appears to me that CVC haven’t done anything except take a few billion quid out of the sport, while also retaining a still sellable majority holding. All this while manufacturer teams have left, and the bottom 2/3rds are struggling to get by. I get that budgets can still be lowered (or just made more sensible, and employ more people), but if the teams got more than 50% of the revenue to share between themselves then there would be much more chance of a healthy F1 (and no pay-drivers!).

  11. We are probably wasting our time (at work… :-) trying to figure out why things unfolded the way they did. Fact is that Ferrari’s performance after changing tyres was very disappointing. I would like to point out the following: 1) Once again the FIA has proved that most of the time they act like an incompetent bunch because it is clear the FIA are to blame for the handling of the tyre saga, not Pirelli. 2) It’s still inconceivable now, after 3 Pirelli seasons, to accept the idea that FOM has the authority to give binding instructions to the tyre supplier, to “spice up the show”. I’ve said it before, am repeating it again: It’s like Sky TV deciding to increase the size of the goal post in the Premier League! 3) It is surprising that given a rules stability of 5 years the engineers don’t appear to grasp why their car is slow, if it’s a donkey at the first race it will still be a donkey at the last race! This is very disappointing.

  12. I will just say this: Ferrari did take a big hit when the tyres were changed…. They would´ve won 3 races (if you take into consideration the malaysia botch up) in the season before the summer break. They may not have ended leading into the break but at least, they were more competitive than they were after the tyre change!
    The change should just have adressed the bonding failure and not the compound and that is what ticks me off! Surely Pirelli could have come up with an answer to the delaminations without altering the compound, instead they reverted to Kevlar belted tyres and thus onto RBR´s laps!! Again, I cannot stress how disgusted I am with that, it shows lack of transparency and respect for the other teams on the grid. And before somebody jumps and brings up the “safety” issue again, well that is why I say that surely Pirelli could have done a better job in the “bonding” process which was the issue!

    1. @karter22 it wasn’t just a bonding failure that caused Silverstone – they could have taken the gamble by enforcing extremely conservative limits and ban the tire-swaps (which they did anyway until the old construction brought back) but with Spa and Suzuka still ahead Pirelli wasn’t really in favor of this.
      However you should also remember that Ferrari, FI and Lotus gave up the blockade and allowed the tire change.

      1. @tmf42

        you should also remember that Ferrari, FI and Lotus gave up the blockade and allowed the tire change.

        And my guess is that they were pushed into giving in! Remember the press when Ferrari refused to give way in Indianapolis to help all others on Michelins! I guess they are a bit more consciencious of there public image nowadays!!
        I insist that the only issue was the delamination due to the bonding…. the blowouts in silverstone were the means to complete the revert to the old kevlar belte tyres! That´s just me and my conspiranoia but hey… sometimes i think I´m right!

  13. Mr Montezemolo has always been in the crossfire, but to me this interview of him seems pretty good. He made his point, partially blaming the tires, partially putting blame om Ferrari themselves, and made a good argument about car VS airplane. He seems to be the Ferrari equivalent of Dr Helmut Marko at Redbull. People in general dislike him, either for his attitude, personallity or whatever. But they do what they are hired to do, and someone has to make the sometimes harsh disicions that need to be made. The same goes for Bernie. People should give them some slack.

    1. +1 Agree with this.

      People in such positions cant be excepted to be a likeable, have a good personality or be pleasing to everyone. Its business with millions and billions at stake. Tough decisions have to be made. I really if Bernie or Luca and Helmut Marko are really bothered wheather people will like them when they speak or make harsh decisions when that is what they are paid to make. Like it of not, McLaren was successful under Ron Dennis for this same reason. Post Martin Whitmarsh, McLaren never was in real contention to win a WCC or WDC. Though he may be likeable to fans, you got to get the results, coz thats what matter not how nice personality you have.

      1. * I really doubt if Bernie or Luca

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