Pirelli director confident tyres will avoid blowouts in Hungary

Pirelli director confident tyres will avoid blowouts in Hungary
Lewis Hamilton's car suffers a blowout at the recent British Grand Prix. Pic: PA

Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery is convinced the Italian manufacturer has now taken a step forward after a spate of issues.

Over the course of this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix, Pirelli will formally debut its new range of tyres that were given a three-day trial during last week’s young driver test at Silverstone.

It was a return to the scene where less than three weeks earlier the Formula One world collectively expressed its anger and demanded change after witnessing a series of blowouts.

Pirelli responded, and for the final 10 rounds of this season’s world title race the tyres will comprise last year’s construction with this season’s compounds, with the belief they will be considerably safer.

Pirelli could not have asked for a better warm-up given the very high temperatures experienced at Silverstone last week, with Budapest set to bask in 30-36 degrees centigrade heat over the next few days.

“Hungary marks the first event for our latest specification tyres which were tried out by the teams at Silverstone during the young driver test,” said Hembery.

“We think everybody achieved their objectives from the three days of running, benefiting from the opportunity to adapt the set-up of their cars to best suit the new tyres.

“From our point of view we made the most of the opportunity to gather data that will help us best meet the needs of the Formula One teams in the future.

“While modern-day simulation is extremely advanced, there are some things you can still only find out from running on a track with a representative car.

“The tyres all ran reliably throughout the test, although of course you cannot compare the times to those seen in the British Grand Prix because the track conditions and other car parameters were different.

“Now, the teams get to use the tyres in competition for the first time.”

As yet, tyre wear and degradation are unknown quantities, especially when it comes to the temperatures due to be experienced in Budapest, which means strategy also cannot be determined.

The teams at least have a baseline, not least from last week’s test, but also given the structure from last year which means they will have been poring over the relevant data.

“The established performance of the 2012 structure, consolidated with the speed of the current compounds, is set to provide an interesting mix of strategies for the races ahead,” added Hembery.

“The teams already have a lot of information about the shape and deformation of this tyre from the previous season.

“Three days at Silverstone were useful to assess the effect this will have on the 2013 cars, with positive results.

“At the Hungaroring, overtaking is never an easy task, so the teams will be looking to use strategy to maximise their opportunities to gain track position.

“The selection of medium and soft tyres should provide plenty of chances to help them do that, based on the data that all the teams gain with different fuel loads in free practice.

“Temperatures in Hungary can be very high, and this is the other factor on which the levels of wear and degradation experienced will depend.

“Tyre performance rather than durability will be the limiting factor and this will form the basis of the strategy selected.

“With the teams aiming to keep the tyres within the peak window of operating performance for as long as possible, our latest design should help them to do this.”

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