In response to Lewis Hamilton’s recent remarks about Pirelli’s tyre usage, Mario Isola, Pirelli’s F1 boss, offered a counter perspective. Hamilton, along with other critics, expressed concerns over the new sustainable tyre allocation system tested during the recent Hungarian Grand Prix, asserting that it resulted in less on-track action.
Hamilton suggested a potential solution to the issue of excessive waste of wet-weather Formula 1 tyres. He pointed out the alarming practice of discarding rain tyres after races if they remain unused.
“There’s a lot of wet tyres that I think they throw away after every weekend. Like, a lot,” said the seven-time world champion.
Hamilton proposed exploring alternatives to ensure a better balance, keeping the fans engaged without compromising the integrity of the sport.
However, Isola countered Hamilton’s claims and clarified some aspects of tyre management.
“At the European races, we leave the (dry) tyres on the rims and take the new ones with us, supplying the teams with the same sets,” he said.
He acknowledged that overseas races pose additional challenges due to customs rules, necessitating the teams to carry the rims while Pirelli transports the tyres separately.
“And that’s a problem, because once a tyre is off the rim, it can’t be reused.”
Isola explained that the use of tyre blankets, currently facing potential bans in Formula 1, creates situations where damage to a single tyre renders the entire set unusable.
“Rain tyres don’t have this problem as they don’t use tyre blankets right now, so we only need to replace one tyre in a set of four. So it’s great to save money on that.”
He also disclosed that Pirelli is exploring the possibility of redesigning the tyres for easier removal from wheel rims after one race, making them suitable for reuse in subsequent races.
“Another idea that we have discussed was for races that are usually dry and sunny, like Bahrain, Abu Dhabi, Jeddah, not to fit all the tyres to the rims,” said Isola.
The F1 Commission is set to convene at Spa-Francorchamps on Friday to determine whether to proceed with the proposed 2024 tyre blanket ban.
According to Auto Motor und Sport, the commission’s decision could have significant implications for Pirelli’s future role as F1’s tyre supplier, potentially paving the way for Bridgestone to take over in 2025.
F1 reaches maximum race limit with 24 races, says CEO
Stefano Domenicali, CEO of Formula 1, has asserted that the sport has reached its maximum race limit with the 24 races scheduled for 2024.
Responding to concerns raised by teams about the increasing number of grands prix per year and its strain on staff, Domenicali clarified that Formula 1 will not exceed 24 races in the race calendar. Instead, the sport will adopt a rotation system with certain locations to enhance the quality of the races.
“There are still countries that are interested,” Domenicali stated in an interview with formula.hu, “but we will not go beyond 24 races in the race calendar. Rather, we will use rotation with certain locations, which gives us the opportunity to raise the quality of the races.”
While the focus remains on the racing itself, Formula 1 aims to provide an extraordinary experience for fans attending the races from morning to night.
“We want to offer more and more to those who visit the races, so that they can have an incredible experience from morning to night,” Domenicali added.
Recent reports indicate ongoing negotiations between Domenicali and the Circuit de Catalunya regarding a potential extension of the Spanish Grand Prix contract through 2036. Moreover, talks are underway for a new event in Madrid, aligning with Domenicali’s vision of an annual rotation of mainly European events in the future.
“There could be news shortly from Madrid, but also from Barcelona,” reported the Spanish sports daily, Marca.