Pirelli has revealed the compounds that it will take to the 23 grands prix that make up the 2021 calendar. Most of the choices are similar to those planned for last year or 2019, although two – Azerbaijan and Brazil – are a step softer and there are also two (Holland and Saudi Arabia) that are brand new circuits for 2021.
Taking into account some of the logistical difficulties caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has the potential to disrupt travel and supply chains, the Formula 1 sporting regulations have changed to offer maximum flexibility, with tyre choices no longer having to be made 14 weeks in advance for long-haul events and eight weeks in advance for European events. As was the case last year, there will be a fixed allocation for each driver of two hard sets, three medium sets, and eight soft sets at each race.
This means that the choices and allocations will be fixed throughout the season, although Pirelli and the FIA reserve the right to alter the selection up to 15 days before each race should circumstances require it.
Mario Isola, Head of F1 and Car Racing: “Announcing all the selections for the year right now will help the teams and the drivers with their planning, also allowing for maximum flexibility just in case the calendar has to change due to Covid-19 restrictions, as we saw last year. The selections themselves are on the whole similar to last year (or 2019, in the case of races not run in 2020), which means that teams should have plenty of data to fall back on – but we have two races where the nominations are softer. The first is Azerbaijan, where our C2 hard tyre wasn’t used last time, so we are now going with the softest selection of all: C3, C4 and C5. Then we have Brazil, where we will take the C2, C3 and C4 this year, as the C1 that was selected as the hardest choice last time didn’t show a particularly big advantage in terms of wear over the medium. In both cases, the softer nomination could lead to a greater variety of race strategies”.
I don’t like this and I have never liked Pirelli choosing tire formulations for the teams at each race. Pirelli should make the tires then take a step back and let the teams choose. And that chart is very revealing and it’s something I have always said about the tires in F1. There are too many formulations with little difference in performance between them. My suggestion remains Pirelli should make 3 compounds: hard, medium and soft and let the teams pick out 2 for the race.
There is a part of me that thinks they should bring three compounds and let teams choose which ones they will use during the race. I see some folks arguing that they should mandate they use all three compounds during the race prompting two-stoppers at each race.
Somehow I do miss the tire rainbow of colours :( I would be one that agrees with you both. I do think the teams should be able to choose which any 3 compounds to bring to a race, and they should have to use all 3 compounds during the race. the Pirelli Rainbow would make it more interesting to see what teams chose what strategy and having a couple pit stops keeps it interesting.
I really hope that the flag graphics are not a sign of things to come, because, wow, that is a whole new level of ghastly.