Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli has confirmed the compound choices for the first eight 2020 grands prix. Pirelli has made two interesting decisions in this list. First, the softest C5 compound will not feature, a fact most probably informed by the lack of a street circuit in the current calendar. Secondly, the Silverstone double-header on 2 and 9 August will get two different sets of compounds, with C1-3 at the first grand prix, and C2-4 at the second. This will provide an interesting comparison for fans, and gives the tyre manufacturer another chance to discuss the effects different tyre compounds can have on F1 racing.
Supercar manufacturer and historic Formula 1 competitor McLaren is expected to cut 1200 jobs, according to UK news reports. The redundancies, which amount to more than a quarter of its 4,000-strong workforce, represent the UK company’s response to the damage inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic on the car sector. Staff reductions are expected to be spread across its road car, F1 and Applied Technologies divisions.
Formula 1 and Silverstone have reached an agreement in principle for the circuit to host two grands prix behind closed doors this summer. The races will need to get UK government approval to go ahead. In a message distributed on Twitter, Silverstone managing director Stuart Pringle said: “I am delighted to confirm that Silverstone and Formula 1 have reached an agreement in principle to host two races behind closed doors this summer.
The decision on whether Silverstone will host Formula 1 at all in 2020 is “still weeks away” according to the circuit’s managing director Stuart Pringle. However, Pringle has been able to confirm the news that should the circuit host one of exclusive tyre supplier Pirelli’s “home events” at all, it will be “behind closed doors”. Formula 1 is hoping to fulfil much of its planned 2020 calendar with an ambitious revised itinerary after racing was dramatically suspended at the eleventh hour in Melbourne, Australia. Plans current at the time of printing would see racing begin in Austria on 3-5 July, which could provide a “blueprint” for future events, with visits to European, Asian, American, and finally Middle Eastern venues making up a season of between 15 and 18 grands prix, according to F1 CEO Chase Carey.
Braking systems company Brembo S.p.A. has announced that it holds an interest in consumer tyre manufacturer and fellow Formula 1 supplier Pirelli. As of 31 March 2020, Brembo holds a 2.43 per cent stake in Pirelli, both directly and through its parent company Nuova FourB.
Pirelli says it “understands and fully agrees” with the decision to cancel this weekend’s Australian Grand Prix. The event was stopped after confirmation came that a member of the McLaren Racing Team has tested positive for COVID-19, leading to the team’s withdrawal. The FIA and Formula 1 convened a meeting of the other nine team principals on Thursday evening, which concluded with the majority favouring stopping proceedings.
The Chinese Grand Prix and Sanya E-Prix have already been postponed, now the FIA is preparing race fans for the possibility of further events being called off should the coronavirus continue to spread. In a statement published yesterday, the FIA said it is “closely monitoring the evolving situation” with relevant authorities and its member clubs, under the direction of FIA Medical Commission president, Professor Gérard Saillant.
Pirelli has inaugurated a new driving simulator at its research and development division in Milan. The manufacturer says it is using its experience with simulation in Formula 1 to accelerate road tyre development cycles and tyre testing, reducing lead times and reinforcing partnerships with leading car makers with increased agility. Pirelli is the latest premium brand tyre maker to implement new simulation technology into its R&D department, following announcements by Michelin and Goodyear. The Italian brand adds that the new simulator is the latest instalment of its digitalisation strategy.
Following the Formula 1 teams’ unanimous rejection of Pirelli’s proposed 2020 tyre specifications, the tyre maker has confirmed its intention to supply 2019 specification tyres to the 2020 F1 World Championship. Pirelli says it, the FIA and the F1 teams took “several different factors” into account in reaching this decision.
Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton won the final grand prix of the 2019 season with a one-stop medium-hard strategy. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in second used the same strategy at Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi, but the third-placed Ferrari of Charles Leclerc added a final soft stint to his medium-hard run plan, taking advantage of the red tyre’s extra speed in the crucial closing stages of the race. Hamilton never lost the lead after gaining pole position in qualifying. He completed a hat-trick with a fastest lap on the hard tyre, which broke a lap record at Yas Marina that had stood since 2009.
Melbourne, Australia has become the fifth location for Pirelli’s global flagship P Zero World retail store. The new opening follows Los Angeles (2016), Munich (2017), Monaco (2018), and Dubai (2019) as the latest site for the brand’s “boutique store for tyres” concept. P Zero World stocks Pirelli’s most exclusive products alongside bespoke services for owners of sports and luxury cars.
In 2021, Formula 1 will bid farewell to 13-inch rims and tyres with chubby sidewalls, with the switch to an 18-inch dimension taking place that season. The onus falls upon exclusive tyre supplier Pirelli to develop rubber for the 2021 F1 cars, and Pirelli says its development will be greatly aided by the adoption of the 18-inch tyre size in ‘feeder’ series Formula 2 from 2020.
Pirelli travels to Albert Parks’ “slightly unusual” street circuit for the Formula 1 2019 season curtain-raiser in Melbourne, Australia this weekend. The exclusive tyre supplier nominated its C2, C3, and C4 compounds as the hard, medium, and soft tyres, saying that the track has a more flowing rhythm that also takes in some reasonably quick corners than stop-and-go street circuits, like Monaco or Singapore.