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Pirelli ready to supply Q3 specific compound tyres

The Italian tyre maker Pirelli’s motorsport boss Paul Hembery told Autosprint they are ready to supply Formula 1 teams with Q3 only specific compound tyres.

Existing rules mean teams have to use the similar tyres they qualify on in the race, something that has lead to drivers sitting out Q3 in order to limit their running and save sets for the race.

Even though the present set-up often means the action is restricted for the fans, Hembery says teams are unwilling to change it. But Pirelli’s motorsport boss insists Pirelli could supply qualifying-specific tyres right away if needed.

“We could do it immediately,” Hembery told Autosprint. “We could come up with a specific compound, or maintain the current ones. But the teams say that the format is fine as is, that the public enjoys tyre strategies.

“But if a fan on the grandstands doesn’t see much running in Q3, then that fan casts the blame on Pirelli thinking that we don’t want to spend any more money in order to supply more tyres.”

“I don’t agree with whoever says that our tyres’ scope of use is too narrow: the temperatures are in line with the estimated values,” he said.

“What has changed, heavily, is the way these tyres are used this year. You can see that there’s a lot more oversteering on the track. We also hear drivers’ comment lamenting a lack of traction, but in my opinion that problem doesn’t exist.

“Having changed the exhaust configuration through a rule has undoubtedly made the cars less stable. That causes wheel spin and the tread heats up, so it’s normal you can’t use the tyre.

“Another point is that nowadays the car performances are a lot closer. Last year there was a second between Red Bull and McLaren, while we’ve now seen in Spain 16 cars within the same second in Q2.

“It’s not true we have intentionally tried to create an impossible challenge. In the next tests with the Renault test car we’ll verify what the teams say.”


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