Admittedly I have been looking for a reason to like the high degradation tires since they were introduced and unfortunately, I have no found one. There was the initial year. Then the year they tried to get too involved in out-thinking the race engineers and suffered several tire blowouts and then they went back to a more durable tire and faced stiff critique that they were being too conservative.
I’m not sure how much punishment Pirelli are willing to take but it’s a noble charter to provide a racing series with a tire that is exact opposite of what you want your customers to think of your product. Last year was one of those “too conservative” years and this season they brought two new compounds.
The Singapore Grand Prix is what is worst about these tires. After all these years, the race was being run 10 seconds slower than they qualified as the teams were managing tire wear the for the entire race. Very little passing, slower pace and tire management for the longest race on the calendar. You can do that math(s) there and see this is not good.
You can’t blame the teams, they are going to run the simulation and race strategy that is quickest and if, in the case of Mercedes, running a harder compounds at a slower pace but for the entire race is fastest, that’s what they will do.
Pirelli motorsport racing manager Mario Isola has been doing some soul-searching and said:
“This is something we should discuss because with experience and all the data that has been collected this year, we now have a better picture of the approach of the teams,” said Isola, when asked by Autosport about the situation.
“It is good to understand which is the right direction for the future.
“These are all considerations that must help us to understand and to improve the situation for next year.
“I don’t have a solution right now but it is important we learn from what happened, not just go ahead without looking behind.”
So, do they bring even softer compounds?
“We need to analyse carefully the data because the risk is that we go softer and softer, we have tyres with more degradation, and the only result is that we have more management,” he said. “It is something we need to evaluate.
“This year we were quite aggressive with the hypersoft, and we have been aggressive at other circuits, and we have seen that sometimes there is a race pace that was not at the right level because they [the drivers] had to manage the degradation.”
Let’s be honest, this isn’t and easy task for Pirelli and they have 10 teams working against them in order to get the most out of the tires they are given. That’s why I suggest we get rid of the HD tires and simply offer two or three compounds for the race weekend and the teams run what they want when they want it.
Let’s see what happens with the proposed larger wheel concept for 2021. For me, F1 can’t get rid of the constructs that seek to hobble and slow F1 cars down including batteries, limited fuel and HD tires as well as DRS quick enough. Why is it that F1’s answer is to create elements that demand teams run slow, conserve and save instead of run flat out, pure grip, full fuel and RPM’s in order to race at the edge or limit?
Hat Tip: Autosport