The Canadian Grand Prix was set to be the stage for Pirelli’s revised version of their 2013 Formula 1 tires. The teams that have been whining about the tires preventing them from going as fast as they supposedly could because they degraded too easily would finally be out of excuses. Except that the tires won’t be ready to go for the race.
Pirelli has announced that each team will be given two sets of the revised medium compound tires for use in the Friday practice sessions only. The race tires will be the same as the ones that the teams started the season using.
Furthermore the changes to the new tires will be different than previously thought. Pirelli’s aim with this revamp will be to reduce or eliminate the number of instances in which the tread rips away from the tire structure during races. Given that this is the new goal, odds are that the performance and wear of the tires will remain similar to how it has been all year.
Red Bull Racing has been one of the most vocal teams in trying to get the tires changed. The team has complained a time or two this season that the tires were preventing them from hitting the full potential of their cars. With the news that Pirelli won’t be doing much to reduce the rapidity of tire degradation it is a good bet that RBR will once again voice their displeasure.
Despite the fact that Pirelli seems to be caving to the pressure that RBR is putting on them, it is a good thing that the tires are being revamped. Without changes to the way the rubber wears down fans won’t get the higher speeds and fewer pit stops that they were looking for from the new tires, but it will still be an improvement.
Pit strategy and tire management will still be essential to winning races, which means that pure speed won’t be enough to get the win. This is Formula One, not drag racing, so as much as people want more speed I think it is better to see the world class F1 engineers go to work and find the strategy that will win races on the tires provided.
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