Pirelli is comfortable with Formula 1 changing what it wants from tires as long as it is consulted by the sport and the teams to understand what is feasible.
Since Pirelli became F1 tire supplier in 2011, the Italian manufacturer has been asked to deliver tires that suffer significant degradation in order to encourage different strategies. In recent years, a push to more durable tires have seen one-stop races become the norm, and Pirelli head of car racing Mario Isola says the idea of a compulsory second stop was discussed as the sport looks at ways of trying to improve the racing on offer.
“We are happy to be part of the process and to be consulted,” Isola said. “Obviously it’s not our job to make the regulation. We can offer our opinion. It was interesting to talk about compulsory two-stops, for example.
“I’m not sure it’s the right solution because also with two compulsory stops, there is the big risk everybody stops at the same lap or very close. So you’re just generating shorter stints where probably drivers can push more — they will use the softest available compound because the stints are shorter — but there is no variation in the strategies.
“This doesn’t mean that it’s a worse situation — it could be good, we don’t know. We asked the teams to make some simulations to understand how they can react to a change of regulation — for me that’s an important point. Any time there is an idea, before trying to implement the idea, it’s very useful that we go back to the teams and we tell them and make a simulation with these rules and let’s see what happens, because sometimes we think we have a very good idea and discover that it’s not.
“So it’s important that the process is a solid process to change the rules, then we are happy to offer our opinion and to design the tires in the direction that is agreed together with all the people that are involved in the sport. But it is not very easy.”