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PIRELLI PUTS THE ACCENT ON STRATEGY IN AUSTRALIA

Pirelli’s 2012-specification tyres delivered on their promise to provide a greater variety of race strategies by decreasing the performance gaps between the compounds this year. The new versions of the P Zero Yellow soft and P Zero White medium were nominated for the Australian Grand Prix, but the drivers had very little dry running with them before the start, as Friday’s free practice sessions in Albert Park were characterised by rain.

The top finishers adopted a two-stop strategy for the race, as was the case last year, but with the pace of the medium and the soft compound only differing by around 0.5 seconds per lap, the way in which they used the tyres was different – with some drivers favouring two stints on the soft tyre and others preferring two stints on the medium.

One of the turning points of the race was a safety car on lap 36, which bunched up the field and allowed Red Bull Racing’s Sebastian Vettel to claim second place by passing McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton in the pits.

At the restart, race leader Jenson Button demonstrated the rapid warm-up time of the medium compound even in the cool conditions of the afternoon by pulling out a second within the first sector, to eventually claim his third victory in Australia. Vettel, who finished runner-up, had adopted a completely different strategy by using the soft tyre during his medium stint. Last year, Vettel’s winning margin was 22 seconds; this year Button won by just over two seconds.

Pirelli’s motorsport director Paul Hembery commented: “The Australian Grand Prix certainly lived up to expectations, and we fulfilled our objective of providing scope for more strategies by reducing the performance gaps between the compounds and extending the window of peak performance. An interesting element was that there were many pit stops that were not for wear level but instead for degradation, confirming what we wanted to achieve strategy-wise. We also saw more use of the medium tyre than the soft tyre, contrary to last year. Despite this range of strategies there were some very tight battles all the way down the field right up to a dramatic final lap, with one driver crashing out and eighth, ninth and 10th places crossing the finish line practically together! The wear and degradation of the tyres was around 0.1 seconds per lap on the soft tyre – with the frontrunners choosing to pit twice, despite the rapid pace at the front of the field. Many congratulations to Jenson Button and McLaren for a stylish victory and also to Mark Webber, who scores his best-ever finish on home territory.”

Categories: Formula 1 Pirelli


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THRILLING RACING AT PIRELLI’S DEBUT IN AUSTRALIA

Pirelli’s first race of its three-year agreement to supply Formula One has provided close competition, two to three pit stops per car, and a total race time that was three minutes quicker than last year underlining the performance of the PZero tyres. This year’s PZero tyres have been designed to combine technology with entertainment, contributing some breath-taking duels from the start to the finish of the Australian race and plenty of overtaking.
Prior to the race Pirelli predicted two to three pit stops for most runners, and this proved to be exactly the case.
It was the very first race finish in Australia for Red Bull’s reigning World Champion Sebastian Vettel, who started from pole position after driving the fastest-ever lap of Melbourne in qualifying and concluded: “We have to make some compliments to Pirelli.”
Pirelli’s Motorsport Director Paul Hembery said: “What a fantastic race! Australia had everything: the quickest lap of Melbourne ever seen in qualifying, plenty of on-track battles, close competition, and some thrilling overtaking manoeuvres. At the end of it we have three drivers from different teams standing on the podium, all of whom performed outstandingly. I think that the same can be said of our tyres too: we had no issues whatsoever and the degradation was less than expected meaning that most drivers – including the top three – chose a two-stop strategy, as we had predicted. We also saw a wide spread of strategies ranging from one stops to three, giving the teams the opportunity to think creatively about their race management. I’d like to thank all the teams and drivers for their support as we built up to our race debut and we hope that the action today has rewarded their faith in us. I’d also like to thank all our people at Pirelli: this exciting start has only been made possible by their unstinting hard work since our agreement was confirmed just nine months ago in June. We’re not about to rest on our laurels though: we’re already thinking ahead now to the next race in Malaysia, which will provide us with a new and different challenge.”

Categories: Formula 1 Pirelli


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2 news for the tag: Australia