Damage caused Raikkonen’s tyre failure, says Pirelli

2017 British Grand Prix

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Pirelli claims the failure which hit Kimi Raikkonen at the British Grand Prix was caused by damage.

Formula One’s official tyre supplier said Raikkonen’s failed front-left was damaged at two points.

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“The results of the analysis on Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen’s front-left soft compound tyre, which experienced an issue at the end of the recent British Grand Prix, reveal specific damage in two places at the edge of the belt close to the internal shoulder area,” said Pirelli in a statement.

“This damage is not present throughout any other areas of the tyre whatsoever. Furthermore, the belt and the structure do not show any signs of fatigue.”

However Pirelli did not specify what caused the damage. “The possible initial cause of this damage is consistent with contact against an external body, leading to a partial separation of the belt from the carcass in the two affected areas,” it said.

“In one of these two places, as a logical consequence, part of the tread also became detached. This damage did not however compromise the actual tyre structure, with Raikkonen able to make his way safely back to the pits on an inflated tyre.”

Pirelli also inspect rubber from other cars at the same race. “A number of detailed tests have since been carried out, both destructive and nondestructive, on other tyres used by front-runners at the British Grand Prix with a similar or bigger distance on them compared to the set used by Raikkonen (for 25 laps).”

“On no occasion was there any sign of fatigue, detachment or laceration – or even the beginning of such problems – that affected the structure of the tyre. In conclusion, Pirelli can confirm that no issues have emerged connected with the tyre itself.”

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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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    21 comments on “Damage caused Raikkonen’s tyre failure, says Pirelli”

    1. Andre Furtado
      26th July 2017, 20:18

      Why bother investigating. It’s always debris.

      1. joe pineapples
        27th July 2017, 8:53


    2. I’m pretty sure I saw a steward throw a stinger device across the track at one point…..

    3. Bad luck caused Kimi’s tire failure. Bad luck and Ferrari. Might as well go for am ice cream.

      1. Silverstone 2013 was ridden with similarly looking failures. This failure seen in Raikkonen’s car is not a coincidence.

        1. Those tires in 2013 were like tissue paper when compared to this years tires. Also, the 2013 tires literally exploded. I believe that Ferrari just got greedy with how long and hard they ran them.

    4. RogerRichards
      26th July 2017, 23:55

      so same as 90% of the other tyre issues in the pirelli era.

      external damage with no known cause. what a joke.

      1. Why is it a joke? Just because you want it to be Pirelli’s fault?

      2. Yep,

        Never have we seen so many issues with Michelin or Bridgestone in the 2000’s.
        Pirelli are pathetic.

        1. @s2g-unit Yep Michelin’s tyres in 2005 were perfect! (to be fair Firestone did help a lot)

          1. I mean Firestone helped Bridgestone. A lot.

          2. One incident. Yes it was a biggy but it wasn’t like Michelin didn’t know what the problem was. Pirelli is always in the dark about their tyre issues. And the issues have been far too frequent.

          3. @davidnotcoulthard
            So in your mind during the 2000’s there was a noticeable amount of “delaminations”?
            Mysterious punctures because of kerbs?
            Exploding tyres?
            Never in those years did we have front wings causing so many issues with tyres.
            We also never had pressures increased by the manufacturer.
            Tyres that overheat during cornering & then can’t come back down to proper temperature, so drivers avoided making overtaking moves for more than what 2-3-4 corners for a few years.
            Stupid small temperature window that drivers complain about. 2012 being a perfect example of lottery wins when teams lucked into the “Pirelli temperature window”

            These Pirelli’s have ALWAYS been terrible!

            1. @s2g-unit hmm, fair enough.

    5. We can whince and complain, but Pirelli from the first moment took these two failures with extreme care.

      Much different to last time there was a failure. There was a sense of urgency from all of their communications.

      1. Last time they said the same thing though. It’s never their fault. While it seems much more Pirelli tyres are failing than those of any other brand.

        Their solution was to change the parameters to make sure the drivers would never get anywhere near the limit of these tyres. Yet, still they fail.

    6. I would like to see a chart showing the frequency of tire problems at each race track with the likely cause(s) as specified by Pirelli or the teams because I don’t entirely believe or agree with Pirelli on this one.

      As someone already pointed out there were similar tyre failures in 2013. I think I remember at least a few of those were credited to “contact with an external body.” My memory leads me to think, if that is true, that Silverstone has a higher incident of “contact with an external body” than other tracks. Yet, the track doesn’t seem to be any more dirty or the curbs any more aggressive than other tracks. That leads me to believe there might be another cause. And it might not necessarily be poor tire construction.

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