Pirelli : Softer Compounds And New Constructions
More Extreme Performance For 2013 Formula One Tires And At Least Two Pit Stops Per Race
A Faster Warm-Up, Lap Times Come Down By 0.5 Seconds, More Thermal Degradation: The Key Characteristics Of The New Formula One P Zero And Cinturato Tires
New Tires Completely Redesigned By Pirelli’s Engineers, With A Performance Gap Of At Least 0.5 Seconds Between The Different Compounds
The Goal: More Pit Stops And More Overtaking
The New Hard Gets A New Color: Orange
Pirelli begins the 2013 Formula One season with a completely revolutionized P Zero range for dry weather and Cinturato range for wet weather. These new tires have been developed according to the wishes of the teams and the latest rules from world motorsport’s governing body, the FIA. The most recent evolutions benefit the compounds, which have become softer, the structures, which are more flexible and the shoulders, which have been reinforced.
The objective of all these innovations, which work closely together, is to improve performance and increase thermal degradation, to ensure at least two pit stops per race andopen up more strategic options for all the teams.
The sidewalls also look different, with colors that are more immediately striking and a brand new marking: orange, which comes in place of last year’s silver to denote the hardest compound.
“The 2013 season continues the philosophy adopted by Pirelli last year in evolving the original 2011 range of Formula One tires,” commented Pirelli’s motorsport director Paul Hembery. “The goal is to continuously set new challenges for the drivers and to ensure that all the teams start the new season on a level playing field when it comes to the tires. Through accumulating more information with each grand prix last year, the teams eventually fully understood the tires, after a spectacular start with seven winners from the first seven races. The result at the end of the year was races with less competition and sometimes only one pit stop. This phenomenon was also observed in 2011, disappointing many fans and promptingsome of the teams to ask us to continue developing our tires further this year, in order to provide a fresh challenge with something different. Our 2013 range of tires mixes up the cards once more to help overtaking and ensure two to three pit stops per race.”
COMPUTER SIMULATIONS AND THOUSANDS OF KILOMETRES OF TESTING
The development of the 2013 P Zero and Cinturato ranges included thousands of computer simulations carried out by Pirelli’s engineers throughout the 2012 season, using sophisticated predictive software. These simulations, which were backed up by laboratory tests on the compounds, have been integrated with data collected during grands prix and the seven thousand so kilometers covered during five private testswith the Renault R30. Pirelli’s test car was driven by Jaime Alguersuari and Lucas Di Grassi at Jerez, Spa, Barcelona (for two sessions) and Paul Ricard(for a wet weather test).
The teams were able to sample the new P Zero Orange hard tire during free practice in Brazil last November, but the debut for the complete new range will come at the first official Formula One test in Jerez at the beginning of February.
HIGHER TEMPERATURES, SOFTER SIDEWALLS, INCREASED PERFORMANCE
The defining characteristic of the 2013 Pirelli Formula One tires is softer compounds all round, which will allow them to reach peak operating temperature faster and deliver lap timesthat are around 0.5 seconds faster than last year.
Swift evolution of Pirelli’s tire technology has allowed the new hard tire – the PZero Orange – to be roughly equivalent to last year’s medium compound. The tire sidewalls are softer this year, but the shoulders are stronger. The effect of this is faster thermal degradation while the tire’s peak performance window is extended. Traction is also improved, which translates into faster lap times, especially on the exit of corners and in combined traction areas, from braking to acceleration and vice versa.
The performance gap between the different compounds is now in excess of 0.5 seconds per lap, as opposed to last year when the difference was often smaller: particularly in the latterhalf of the season. Faster thermal degradation and a bigger performance gapbetween the compounds will encourage overtaking throughout each race.
11 SETS OF TIRES PER CAR ASSIGNED BY BARCODE
The Formula One tires are designed at the Pirelli laboratories in Milan and produced at a dedicated facility in Izmit, Turkey. Having passed quality control and other checks, the tires are then sent to Pirelli’s logistics hub in Didcot (United Kingdom) from which they are shipped out to all the different circuits. Once more, each Formula One car will have 11 sets of tires available for the weekend, made up of six sets of the harder and five sets of the softer compound. In total Pirelli takes about 1800 tires to each race.
Tires are allocated to each team at random, as per FIA regulations, through the use of bar codes. FIA officials allocate the tires to the teams, with no involvement from Pirelli in this process. Each tire has a barcode embedded into its sidewall even before the vulcanization process, which effectively acts as the tire’s ‘passport’.
The on-track Pirelli team will once more be made up of around 55 people this year, including fitters,logistics personnel, hospitality staff, and engineers. As has always been the case, each team will have its own dedicated Pirelli engineer.
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