Pirelli F1 boss Mario Isola has confirmed that the goal for the new 18-inch tires is to push teams to develop more strategies as the season progresses.
The Italian spoke about the new tires and how they can influence the strategic thought processes of F1 teams during a GT World Challenge Europe Endurance Cup event in Imola. He said:
“What we saw, and it’s important to point this out, is that the drivers can push. In the three compound choices, the behaviors were different; our goal is to have a Hard with which you can push to do long stints, a Medium that has a little bit of degradation, but with better performance resulting in a good race tire, and then the Soft which is the most extreme, great for qualifying and but not too much for the race.”
He went on to add, saying:
“If they were with different performance, but with zero degradation, it would not make sense to bring them on track. The goal is to push the teams to make different strategies.”
"Don’t ever underestimate the great work Pirelli has done" - F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali on new tires improving racing
F1's new regulations saw them change the size of the rims, and along with it came new tire compounds from Pirelli that promised lower degradation rates. Drivers were able to race hard in the first two races of the season in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. Pirelli was given part of the credit for facilitating that by the sport's CEO Stefano Domenicali.
Speaking to the media after the season-opening Bahrain GP, Domenicali said:
“I think we don’t ever underestimate the great work Pirelli has done. As you know, tires have always been under a big spotlight and I think that we have seen the different typology that gave another element to the show, different pit stops, different strategies. Some did it right and some did it wrong but that is part of the game and this is great. On the other hand, we have seen so many overtakes I couldn’t count and that is creating something for the public.”
For the third race of the season in Australia, the Italian brand intends to offer the C2 and C3 compounds as the hard tires. Instead of making a natural progression to the next step, which is C4, the softest tire compound in Melbourne will be the C5. It will be the first time Pirelli has not chosen successive compounds for a race since 2018 for a Grand Prix weekend.