Should F1 adopt Pirelli’s tyre stint limit plan?

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In the wake of Sebastian Vettel’s tyre blow-out during the Belgian Grand Prix, Formula One’s official tyre supplier Pirelli pointed out how, in their view, the failures could have been prevented.

“In November 2013, Pirelli requested that there should be rules to govern the maximum number of laps that can be driven on the same set of tyres, among other parameters to do with correct tyre usage,” they announced after Vettel blasted them over the blow-out. “This request was not accepted.”

Pirelli wanted a rule which would limit drivers to doing no more than 50% of race distance on the harder prime tyre (the medium compound at Spa) and no more than 30% of race distance on the soft option tyre (the soft tyre at Spa).

Amid uncertainty over whether the tyre failures seen at Spa will recur at Monza next weekend, should F1 adopt this rule? And if so, should it be a long-term change or just a one-off as a precaution?


There is a clear safety need to impose the rule, as Vettel’s tyre failed without warning at one of the quickest parts of the circuit. It could have caused a very serious crash not only involving Vettel, but also Romain Grosjean, who was following closely at the time.

Such failures are not new to Formula One. There was a spate of them in 2013, notably at the British Grand Prix, but also at the South Korean round where Sergio Perez suffered a major tyre failure.


Every component on an F1 car – be it a wing, a suspension component, a suspension component or something else – has a wear life set by its team at which point it is replaced.

None of these is subjected to an upper limit on use for safety reasons, even though a wing, suspension or brake failure could all cause serious accidents. So why should tyres be any different?

I say

Pirelli contend that Vettel’s tyre failure occurred due to wear and have not cited other factors such as debris or damage owing to running outside the track limits. However as Vettel had experience little to no apparent performance drop-off due to wear, data from his car during the race led the team to believe his tyres would last until the end, and Pirelli had indicated the wear life of his medium tyres was around 40 laps compared to the 27 he covered before the failure, how were Vettel or Ferrari to know the tyre was about to fail?

Clearly, sudden tyre failures of this type should not happen. But they have happened, and as F1 will use the same tyre compounds this weekend at Monza, this potentially presents a problem. Speeds are even higher at Monza, not just on its long straights but also in the very fast Curva Grande and Parabolica corners. The high-speed nature of the track also gives strategists a strong incentive to keep pit stops to a minimum – a single stop has been the way to go at this track in recent races.

As a one-off measure on safety grounds, then, it’s hard to make a case against imposing a limit on tyre stint length this weekend. The principle that it’s up to the drivers and teams to understand how well their tyres will perform is trumped by the pragmatic need to ensure driver safety when, as seems to be the case, the tyres are not lasting as long as they should.

That’s the short-term answer. Beyond that, F1 must ask whether it’s acceptable for its tyres to perform this way. After what happened at Spa, Vettel and Rosberg were unequivocal on that point.

You say

Should drivers be limited to a maximum number of laps per tyre set? Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.

Should drivers be limited to a maximum number of laps per tyre set?

  • No opinion (3%)
  • No (80%)
  • Yes - at the next race only as a one-off (10%)
  • Yes - at all races (7%)

Total Voters: 320

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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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85 comments on “Should F1 adopt Pirelli’s tyre stint limit plan?”

  1. No, let them race.

    1. Marton Spendelow
      30th August 2015, 20:47

      No way tyre limts! That’s part of team managing the car. If I over drive my car and create more tyre wear depending on road/track conditions then that is a driver/team issue. And manufacture tire testing should give some sort of run life to the teams, no matter what style/form of motor sports.

    2. No, because it is a tyre manufacturers job to ensure that a tyre won’t blow out. Which means that only the event that the tyre isn’t clearly going to cut it, Pirelli and the FIA should intervene. I think a good example is 2013’s Phillip Island motogp round where Bridgestone and Dorna forced the riders to make a compulsory pit stop as Bridgestone had set a maximum number of laps per rear tyre.

      1. not really a good example. 2013 Phillip Island tyre issues were caused by a resurfacing of the track, and bridgestone had no real data on how the track would perform, their first solution was just to shorten the distance by a few laps but as the weekend went on the problem got worse.
        On a seperate note its a good thing they did shorten the race as it started to rain as the flag came out so if the race was still full length they would have had to stop it, switch to a wet tyre (the spare in the pits had been used for the first stint) and do an aggregate GP. Also was marquez not DQ’d for missing his pit??

  2. They should defintely give max lengths, but the teams shouldn’t have to stick to them. If they don’t, any failure is entirely their own fault.

    1. Well that’s just pointless @pwaa.

      1. No, its not pointless, it’s the correct approach, because each driver and car is different, so the exact amount of wear will differ, but it also highlights a failure in the system.
        Pirelli have a contract that stipulates what sort of tyre they provide to the teams. Their interpretation of that contract is they guarantee the life of a tyre as 30% of race distance for soft, 50% of race distance for hard, meaning their is 20% that isn’t accounted for, and that is the problem.
        The rules state a driver must run tyres of both compounds during a race, so Pirelli should be supplying tyres that they guarantee will last that distance, so it should be something like soft = 45% of race distance, hard = 65% of race distance. Yes, that adds up to more than 110%, and that is the point: It shouldn’t be that 20% of the race is being run on tyres with an unknown life expectancy. A team should be able to run the entire race on the minimum number of tyres demanded by the rules (and that should include some distance to cater for Qualifying as well). If a team believes that using more tyres is faster, then that is their choice, but Pirelli should still be supplying tyres that meet the minimum number of tyres used required by the rules and they guarantee will last the race distance (and qualifying as well).

        1. The rules state a driver must run tyres of both compounds during a race

          Yeah but not exactly one of each. IIRC the point of the rules was to have at least 2 stops per race, which would make up for the percentage deficit you highlighted.
          Having 45% and 65%, like your example, would be almost guaranteeing 1 stop races for everyone, which seems awfully boring.

  3. absolutely not. no more limitations. if pirelli cannot make and supply tyres that do not totally disintegrate then give the contract to michelin who do make racing tyres.

    1. June 19th 2005
      Never Forget

      1. I was there at that USGP- sitting in row M at corner 1. There is a huge difference: tire wars. At the time Michelin and Bridgestone were pushing boundaries to gain an advantage and the high speed, high load pushed Michelin over the edge. It was a mistake and Michelin bought me a ticket for the race in 2006- fair play in my books, although I was pretty angry at the time.

        What is the excuse this time???? “the tires should last 40 laps, except in this case when they didn’t but it was wear related even though most of the time before the tires would drop off in performance as they wore and it is clear Vettel’s didn’t”. I’m sorry- but there is no tire war and there is no excuse for tires so close to the limit since everyone has to race on the same rubber. The egos in charge of making the rules are ruining the sport and my sympathy for Pirelli is waning quickly. It is clear they are designing to a spec defined by someone very ignorant- as an Engineer I understand this all too well, but it is Pirelli’s responsibility to push back. It is their name on these tires.

  4. No, we need less rules and ‘you must do this and that’, not more.

    Pirelli simply need to be allowed to build tyres that degrade and fall off the cliff of performance long before they fail structurally.

    1. I’d rather they were allowed to build whatever type of tires they want, ideally they’d be the most durable, and fastest tires, with the term “designed to degrade” consigned to the history books.

    2. In total agreement.

  5. How many laps michelin tire needs to explode? why risks? cant make it ? resign

    1. The ones they had at the US GP in 2005? Less than 10.

  6. No, because it means that drivers can’t run a risky strategy like Vettel attempted to at Spa and reap the benefits.

    F1 needs to be less predictable, not more. Mandating maximum stint lengths smacks of over-regulation and doesn’t take into account different cars using the tyres differently – a Force India might be able to do a few laps over any limit, whilst a Williams might not. Why should FI be punished for having a car that’s kind on its tyres?

  7. There’s an argument to be made for an exceptional circumstance for the next race until a workable solution is devised (i.e a tyre redesign), but otherwise the lack of forewarning for the failure was totally unacceptable and a clear flaw.

    1. I think this as well. Driver safety is paramount, so I think yes, untill Pirelli are able to provide a safe tyre, if they can’t, Michilin is waiting.

    2. I should add that I do not feel that stint length limits are conducive to strategic variation, which was the basis for introducing designed-to-degrade tyres in the first place. Having enforced limits is wholly unecessary and defeats the purpose of the shifting emphasis to tyre conservation.

      I honestly think Michelin, a manufacturer with a clear outline of what it wishes to achieve and is resolute in that ideal, would be good for F1. Pirelli are causing themselves far too many problems and bringing disrepute to their brand and the sport.

      1. Well said.

        Instead of Pirelli dictating maximum stints for the teams, the FIA should be dictating MINIMUM tyre life for Pirelli. Asumming more rules is the solution.

    3. But, I think that spa is a unique place… you won’t come across the load the tyres come under at the top of eau rouge at any other track. We haven’t seen other failures this year. I think it was a very specific issue and if we take Rosberg’s failure as a cut tyre, one failure in half a season cannot be taken as an endemic issue…

      1. Pirelli have backed themselves into a corner though by stating that it was a wear-related failure. If they had admitted that it was an isolated fault, perhaps we wouldn’t have this problem.

        Also, I don’t subscribe to the uniqueness argument. They are for the whole season, and must therefore be capable of handling the demands at every racetrack.

  8. Fikri Harish (@)
    30th August 2015, 12:52

    If it’s safety related, then I’m afraid it has to be a yes.
    On principle, no. Because this would effectively amount to a mandatory two-stops strategy.

    As long as they can fix this before next season, I’ll concede.
    Any longer than that then the FIA and Pirelli can bite me.

  9. If Pirelli still insist that Vettel’s tyre failure occurred due to wear, we need “a maximum number” at the next races until they reintroduce last year’s tyre structure.

    1. a maximum number of laps on a tyre is exactly what Mercedes wants, as it will reduce one possibility of others beating them, that is why Lauda promptly kicked Rorberg’s ass into line after SPA.

      1. If those tyre were not acceptable, we might get “a maximum number of laps”, right?
        But Lauda and Wolff criticize Vettel’s manner, do you know this?

  10. Just what F1 (and the world) needs, another regulation… Absolutely not. Let ’em race!

  11. Either way Pirelli doesn’t know the behaviour of its tires well enough to predict that accurately. (Silverstone 14, Spa 15) Would result in way too safe limits but it’s better than having someone getting hurt. But seriously Pirelli should get its act together and build proper tires instead of these air balloons with rubber on them.

    1. I think your mean Silverstone 2023

    2. Has everyone forgotten that after Silverstone 2013, it was revealed that the teams were using tyres in ways in violation of the manufacturer’s recommendations?

      1. mclaren didn’t and perez’s tires popped twice.

      2. Blame the FIA for being spineless with enforcement then, not the teams.

  12. If they impose max stint lengths that takes away the point of having tyre changes. It’s meant to be a strategic decision by the team and the driver for both when to pit and how much to stretch out a stint length. What’s next after that, max speed limits on the straights and corners? Maximum amounts of power put out from the engine?

    If they do impose a max stint length then what’s the point in designing them to degrade anymore? They may as well switch back to rock hard race tyres that can be pushed as hard as they like but enforce a rule they can only be run for a certain lap count.

    1. Well said.

    2. The top speed limit was why I didn’t watch the Nürburgring 24 hours.

  13. I don´t like the lack of attrition in modern F1-races at all. It makes for more predictability, less chances for underdogs, less tension and excitment when someone is in an unexpected good position. I grew up with half a dozen of races per season that had less than 10 finishers, and those races usually were quite entertaining. One of those things that can fail at a car are the tyres, and there is one big thing about tyres which can add a lot of tension and suspense for the viewer: The viewer can see when someone tries to make them go longer, when a car got its current good position by stopping less, thus the viewer knows about whom to worry, when to ask the “will he make it to the end?”-question.

    Of course there´s also a safety aspect in there, but I´d much rather have an environment where it´s safe to have a puncture than have punctures removed from F1.

    That said, Pirelli´s wish is an understandable reaction to the unreasonable amount of bad media they get after any puncture. We had to few of them in recent years, people are not used to it anymore, they have forgotten that anything that goes through the stress of an F1 race might fail and that that´s totally normal. And with 4 tyres on 19 races with (let´s say) 3 stints on 20 cars, there´s not many tyre-failures. There´d probably be some more if any competition forced them to build tyres more towards the edge.

  14. Personally I’m against the stint length proposal, because then there is no point to have degrading tires. They could return to Bridgestone levels and make all races per definition 2 stoppers. But I somewhat hope they do it in Monza because it’s a clear 1-stop. Forcing them to do 2 stops with considerable margins for wear will show how bad the racing will be and we can move on to other discussions.

  15. For safety reason: Yes – at the next race only as a one-off at least after the only tyre supplier understand its own product technical limitation. SMH

  16. Next up: specified pitstop windows in each race (did/does DTM have something like this?), if you pit any other time you’ll be penalised.

  17. Totally against any limit being set. I would rather there be a 100% ruling that the drivers stay on the black stuff. Vettel’s failure could be because he bounced over the kerbs too often.

    I had a tyre failure on the motorway recently, because a truck had an insecure load and dropped a few pallets on to the road. I was not the only one to hit lumps of wood.

  18. As much as I am against the entire idea of setting any maximum stint length (the strategies would become even less diverse), safety needs to be a priority. If we’re not fully confident that Pirellis are safe to drive on, then a limit should be imposed, at least until a long-term solution is found.

  19. No way. This would be ridiculous.

  20. No. Make some proper tyres, Pirelli. Or use some of the “too durable”, “bad for the show” ones from last year. The teams will have spent a fortune simulating the life out of those, so they should have some idea how they will degrade.

  21. i voted no opinion on this because in one side this is another ridiculous idea to make F1 more in the bad state, on the other side there is a potential danger that in Monza the random blow out will occured again. Of course Pirelli as a competent tyre supplier should provide the safest tyre possible for the race, but the reactions from Pirelli side after the last race weren’t very convincing and instead they suggesting by limiting on tyre usage shows how surprisingly incompetent they are to find the perfect compromise between safety and durability.. i know Pirelli are pressed by FIA especially by Bernie to produce degrading tyres but they should correcting how to produce the safe tyre for the race start from here in Monza next week….

  22. This is silly, F1 tires should not explode! they should degrade so that you get the pain from trying an unfeasible tire strategy. Pirelli sort it out!

  23. I voted No.

    1. I don’t believe that we have a new situation at Monza compared to any of the races this year or the Monza race last year. Ofcourse there were 2 tire failures in Spa but that does not warrant a limit.

    2. Lets say if a limit was set (like pirelli saying 40 Laps in Spa) the tires could fail much before that like 28 Laps or lesser (like Vettel and Rosberg). So what is the point. Otherwise they will just set a ridiculously low number of laps to ensure that it does not happen again. Such a thing will penalize the drivers like Button who can nurse the tires and get a longer stint out of it.

    3. From Pirelli’s stand point , if they can make the tire failure little softer than the current dramatic burst then it would be a easier for the drivers to keep the car under control in case of an eventuality. They can make the failure a 2 stage process where there is a first internal layer giving away which slows the car down dramatically followed by a outer layer giving away on further stress. Either way the tire bursts have to go. From a TV audience it will look dramatic and spectacular but for the drivers this is not a good situation. I know this point might sound ridiculous and hard on Pirelli but science has its way doing the impossible.

    I have been watching F1 for around 25 years now. If I am not wrong the tire bursts where the tire gives away instantly blowing up and shredding itself into pieces is more of a recent phenomenon. If I remember right, in the Michelin, Bridgestone , GoodYear days in case of a puncture or something the tire deflates firsts and then it slows starts ripping off slowly when the car runs along the track. Many times I remember the deflated tire carcass spinning separately around the rims for a long time when the car is running.

    Either way I dont like the current Pirelli approach of a dramatic blow out when the tire gives in making it completely unsafe for the drivers.

    And I don’t like Tire limits !!!!!

  24. I think the fact Pirelli even asked for these limits back in 2013 shows that they are in over their head. It shows that they don’t really have confidence or true understanding of what they are making. I mean, never have I heard of Michelin asking for something as ridiculous as this. Look at Le Mans…Michelin allow the teams teams to triple and even quad stint their tires in order to save time from making pit stops.
    For me, personally, Michelin should be the only option for this next tyre tender.

    1. @eoin16
      Michelin asked for a temporary chicane to be added to Indi back in 05 after their tires started exploding.
      And that was back in the days of testing and the tire war.

      1. The crux of the matter there being that they were in a tyre war, with much higher competitive pressures than if they were the sole supplier.

      2. You are correct and it is my mistake for not saying that I do make an exception for Indy 2005 because at least Michelin held their hands up and admitted that they messed up that weekend. That couldn’t have been easy for them but it was the right thing

        1. And Pirelli are making tyres according to FIA requirements

  25. It’s ridiculous that Pirelli wants lap limits, especially the ultra conservative limits they suggest. Their 30% for Options/50% for Primes seem more to prevent/reduce negative publicity than for safety reason – it would require drivers to change tires before degradation becomes an issue and cars start to lose real performance.

    Here’s what they are suggesting as it applies to Spa – for the Options, 30% equals 13.2 laps at Spa. Since the top 10 started on Options that had at least 3 laps (from Qualifying), they would all have to Pit by lap 10. Lewis couldn’t have gone to lap 13, or Vettel to lap 14. So they come in on Lap 9 or 10, put on the Primes, and now the front runners need to pit by lap 31 or 32. If they want to try the undercut they could come in on lap 29 or 30, but would need to use the Primes no matter what.

    It could then be a strategy to save a set of Options and qualify outside the top 10, as you could then go to lap 13 before you pitted, then you’d have more more leeway in what’s available to you. Effectively cars qualifying from 3-4 to 10 on the grid would be at a bigger tire disadvantage.

    Also, as it applied to Spa, while Vettel would have been forced to come in for new boots, Grojean wouldn’t have pitted under the VSC at lap 20, since he would have needed to come in for a 3 stop, since he wouldn’t be allowed to run the primes 1 lap over that 50% limit.

    So Pirelli’s ultra conservative suggestion would take tires out of race strategy – the racing would be a bit boring, but at least they won’t be faced with negative publicity.

  26. No, absolutely not in my opinion. What we should do, is bring Michelin back into F1. That will solve a lot of problems.

  27. There is already a lap limit of sorts in that teams must run both compounds of tires during a race, thus making a mandatory pit stop and tire change. Since most teams do not pit on the last lap to comply, the number of laps run on one set is already less than a full race. It would seem tires should be made to last accordingly.

    There are so many factors that come into play that affect tire wear or possible blowouts during a race that lap limits would not address. Cars and drivers kinder to their tires would be punished by such a limit hindering their possible race strategies. Different tracks, surfaces, curbs, points on the track (maybe even outside track limits), contact, debris, setup, driving style and many other factors affect tire wear and damage as much or more than merely number of laps run. Lap limits serve more as a legal disclaimer for Pirelli than as an actual problem solver.

  28. Absolutely not. Thanks to the over-degrading tyres + rule to use both conpounds + qualifying tyre rules we already have a de-facto two-stop strategy for every single race. It’s atrocious. I consider creative strategies (and the corresponding great drives that come with all of them) an essential part of F1. The current tyres regulations are killing that in exchange of soulless DRS-assisted, tyre-degradation-based passes. It’s horrible.

    What we need are decent tyres that last at least 30 laps, and decent estimates from Pirelli.

  29. Isn’t this what their ’40-lap-limit’ is supposed to be? If not what else use did that indication gave anyway? Sure give the teams a limit to run in, as long as this isn’t as conservative as the church…

  30. No, no, no. An end-life tyre is supposed to give less and less grip, not to explode. And Pirelli is supposed to make proper racing tyres.

    F1 should drop them and take Michelin.

  31. Haha.


    I presume you asked just to illustrate the point that fans are so much against it.

    I also presume I do not need to go considerable lengths to explain it. Pirelli allegedly said Vettel’s tyre was good for 40 laps, then said it blew due to overuse… It also failed to recognise it is a safety hazard to have a blow-out as a penalty for overuse (rather than normal or progressive pace drop-off) and proposed this unreal idea instead.

    1. Again, point well made. Too many are failing to grasp the fact that tyres should not fail whilst still superficially performing well.

  32. ColdFly F1 (@)
    30th August 2015, 17:11

    No – tyre strategy should be a team riks/reward decision (based on input from Pirelli).
    More rules will mean more boring races as most teams will end up with similar strategies.
    And where to stop? – should all teams replace the front wing after 30 laps based on what happened to Force India in Hungary?

  33. The FIA has no chose but to adapt the tyres lap limitations Pirelli has been pushing about, because what they have on their hands is a tyres safety problem, and since the SPA tyres blow-out the Monza tyres were already made.

  34. No – basically this will force all teams into one strategy, beyond those 10 places back on the grid with a choice of tyres, defeats the who purpose of a mandatory tyre change, might as well make tyre that can last more than 50km in that case….

  35. Having no opinion is what feels the smartest to me. Imposing maximum stint lengths is arguably sensible, but very questionable from a racing perspective, as predictable pit stops tend to hurt the suspense.
    And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. I could think of dozens of cons and pros, all of them valid to a certain degree, but they all fail to convince me 100%. I’ll leave this decision to people who are smarter and more involved than me.

  36. The cars keep getting faster, with more power and downforce, over time as cars get developed. More tyre load.

    Pirelli can’t cater for that AND 2-3 stops at all the different tracks and kerbs without the opportunity to test.

    They’re chasing a very complex moving target, with no testing. So of course it’s all going to go wrong sometimes.

    They need testing. Not the teams, but Pirelli, maybe with some kind of mule that has illegal, adjustable amounts of power and downforce.

  37. Yes. If the tires are going to go from normal performance to catastrophic failure, then the FIA need to enforce a lap limit with a black flag for violating it.

  38. If the same tyre compound is to be used at Monza, then, in the interest of driver safety, a limit should be imposed for Monza only. But Pirelli should really be penalised for this situation.

    I’m very surprised that – so far – 80% of you have voted ‘No’ when it was clearly incredibly dangerous what occurred at the last race weekend.

  39. If you leave it down to the teams to determine what is ‘safe’ and what is not on a car, then there will be complete and utter chaos. That’s why we have safety regulations in place. As the tyres are part of a car and when it fails, it is potentially very dangerous – no different to a brake failure or a throttle jam. Perhaps I’m still a touch emotional still after the events of last weekend over in the States, but when you have large chunks of tyre flying potentially towards other drivers, fans or marshals (as we saw at Silverstone with Alonso) it could possibly be very nasty. Whilst I’m still not 100% with Pirelli on all of this (their statement following the race was vague and had very little relevance, and I’m not convinced that it was solely down to wear), I still believe that if any part on a car is not safe to do a certain distance, then it should not do said distance. At the end of the day, I want to see as few sudden tyre de-laminations (and therefore as little large chunks of tyre debris being launched into the air) as possible.

    For that reason and that reason alone, I feel that we need not just mandatory stint limits, but perhaps Pirelli should consider developing extra compounds as well, to cover more bases.

    1. @craig-o, That’s the only reasonable post I’ve read so far.

      We have rules in place to protect teams from themselves and for driver safety. Left to their own devices, teams will bush the boundaries to very dangerous levels.

      Remember the wing failures Force India suffered in Hungary? That’s an example of pushing the boundaries too far to save as much weight as possible or gain every drop of performance. Because their wings passed the regulatory safety inspections for deflection and crashes, we can’t and should not punish them.

      Imagine what would happen if we didn’t even have those minimum standards? Would the drivers be safer or less safer?

      1. I agree with you – a very reasonable approach from @craig-o. It’s sad that too many responses here and on other sites are very binary in their nature. Situations like this can’t ever be about a simple view of he who is right and he who is wrong.

        The 2 (very different) incidents last weekend were, it seems to me, related only by the location. Rosberg would appear to have been unlucky with some debris causing the puncture. If it wasn’t for the Vettel situation, then we wouldn’t have been talking quite so much about it.

        Vettel’s case is far more complex – no sane person can be in any doubt that he pushed well beyond the track limits on many occasions – just look at the photos/video-clips of his tyres being visibly deformed by the high horizontal loads imposed on them – surely this was a contributing factor that stressed the tyres beyond the ‘limits’ that Pirelli were allegedly suggesting were feasible and thus contributing to the final blowout that I am very pleased he survived

        Of course, this is all compounded by the fact that F1 teams have, and always will, push the regulatory limits – actually that is part of the attraction of the sport for me – and I suspect accounts for the risks that drivers and teams are prepared to take

        But yet, there can be no doubt that Pirelli did themselves no favours in their post race responses – emotionally based responses, possibly caused by a few seasons of negative brand impact, where many don’t see to realise or accept they have been supplying what they were asked to deliver

        So; after all that – would replacing Pirelli with Michelin be any better? I doubt it. Was this a complex aggregation of factors? Highly likely. Should tyres degrade, rather than failing catastrophically? Of course, but a failure is a compound effect and not so easy to characterise. Is driver safety paramount? No doubt, but this is a sport that carries risk from its very inception.

        My final point is – where is the FIA – they have been conspicuously absent from this debate, and it is that for me that is the bigger problem

  40. I had the opportunity to see this GP from the perspective of the onboard cameras, and one of the cameras used was the Forward looking Right hand Infra-Red camera on board Vettel’s Ferrari, and it just happened that you could see something getting hot at the rear of the car in the cars right hand wing mirror. My guess is it was the right rear tyre, although it might have been the radiator. I don’t think it was the radiator because, by the amount of colour, you could see it was getting about as hot under acceleration out of a corner as the front tyre did under braking into the corner. Unfortunately I lost the video feed before I had a chance to go back and study it closer. I believe it was the right rear tyre. I don’t know if this was abnormal or not.
    The on board camera video showed the tyre failure from Grosjean perspective, and (again, I didn’t have the opportunity to study it closely) it seemed to me there was a lot of dust in the air when it failed.
    It would have been nice to have seen it from the perspective of the Infra-Red camera.
    The infra-red camera does raise a point which hasn’t been mentioned, which is do Ferrari monitor all the tyres with this sort of camera during the race, and if so did it show any signs of abnormality before the tyre failed? The reason being is if they do monitor the tyres during the race, and it did show signs of being abnormally hot, then doesn’t part of the responsibility for this failure belong to Ferrari?

    1. The infra-red camera is irrelevant in monitoring tyre temperature. All the cars have sensors mounted which transmit tyre temperature information via telemetry, this is then monitored by the teams and their respective pirelli engineers. This is how teams are able to tell their drivers if their tyres are too hot or outside the ideal working window. Ferrari have already stated that there were no indications of any problems with either tyre temperatures or tyre pressures.

      Incidentally when a tyre reaches the end of its wear life the temperature drops below the operating window, which is one of the reasons that the car will lose grip and it becomes like driving on ice for the driver as the tyres are too cold. This did not happen, the tyre failed without any indication of having reached this stage.

  41. So what they are proposing is a mandatory 2 stops race, even if the rules only mandate for 1…

    Shouldn’t they just make tires that can be properly raced by F1’s set of rules? …like so many have done before?
    F1 shouldn’t have to adjust its rules artificially because of a sub-par supplier.

  42. Guybrush Threepwood
    30th August 2015, 22:33

    How about they just make tyres that don’t explode…

    1. ColdFly F1 (@)
      31st August 2015, 10:03

      and light bulbs that never burn out…

  43. I don’t like this plan.

  44. If they ran extensive testing to determine the absolute longest the tyres will last without high risk of structural failure and put a reasonable cushion before that, it would make sense safety-wise. However, putting arbitrary limits on them that will cover up any flaws in the construction should be out of the question – and that is probably what we would have to live with. Cuts in tyres are not a sign of normal wear, so that should be addressed first.

  45. I’m with Vettel on this topic – though not the angry irrational post-race Vettel who threw his toys out the pram because his gamble didn’t work, but the one who gives an opinion when it’s not just about himself.

    “We are all old enough to make our own decisions in life … so it’s our conscious decision if we want to go racing or not. I think we expressed the love that we share for racing, for the thrill, managing the car on the limit,” four-time champion Sebastian Vettel said.

    “Obviously there’s always the risk that something can go wrong. I think it lies in the nature of the sport,” the Red Bull driver said. “I think we’ve come a long way in terms of safety if you look back and a lot of improvements have been made but I think if anyone is not happy, he’s old enough to say no.”

    Should the tyres explode? No. Will it sometimes happen in extreme circumstances? Yes. The situation here was totally different to the previous British Grand Prix episode at which there was clearly a significant fault in the tyre design, in this case it was probably a combination of factors with a dose of bad luck.

    Actually, I think the more important issue here is that giving limits will still not guarantee no failures, failures will always happen. What it will guarantee is that everyone is forced to two-stop and strategy and relative car and driver strength/weakness will go out of the window.

    In terms of safety I think that closed cockpits would be a much more significant improvement so if Vettel is really concerned about safety why has he remained more neutral on that issue? Is it “the DNA of F1” (a term that I hate because it is nonsense)? But exploding tyres have been a feature of F1 for decades so surely that’s part of the DNA of F1? The concept of DNA is used only when it’s convenient to support someone’s argument – F1 should be designed for the current decade.

  46. I agree with imposing limits on tire runs for the following reasons,

    Firstly is not in relation with the failure of Sebastian’s tire in Spa as his run was less than 70% of Pirelli’s suggested tire limits and secondly it clearly indicated that the tire wear wasn’t the concern. However,

    1. Pirelli was told to create tires that have a faster wear rate and even after Pirelli’s request, the tire testing has been primarily avoided by the sport.

    2. The tire limit would indirectly benifit the sort in a way as drivers and teams would not necessarily stretch the tires byond the prescribed limits and hence that may seem some lack of tire saving by drivers.

  47. No way ! And what about the race strategy? No reason for that. It will make the races totally predictable !

  48. If Pirelli say the tyres need a limit then they need a limit. It is easy for the viewers to say we should let them race, we should encourage risky strategies and we should let the drivers decide what they do. However if the tyres for whatever reason are not safe enough to do so then steps need to be taken which will stop possibly serious accidents happening. Pirelli could have made tyres which can last a whole race but they weren’t required to do so. Next season if the tyres are safer and can do the race then get rid of the limits.

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