Pirelli has admitted that it will concentrate on getting its tyre supply just right in year one of its new deal with F1, with its ambition of spicing up the show probably having to wait until 2012 at the earliest.
The Italian brand, which replaces Bridgestone at the end of the current season, has made no secret of its desire to use tyres to help make F1 more of a spectacle for fans, but insists that it needs to get the basics right before it can think about experimenting. Former Sauber, Jordan and Williams driver Nick Heidfeld has already begun testing Pirelli's prototype tyres on a 2009-spec Toyota F1 car, and a first group test is being pencilled in for the week following this year's race finale in Abu Dhabi.
"We will seek to contribute to the 'show', alongside addressing the needs of the teams," Pirelli motorsport boss Paul Hembery told Brazil's O Estado de Sao Paulo
newspaper, "To produce durable and high performance tyres is not a problem, [but] the challenge is to find the right compromise between lifespan and durability, with regards to the show.
"It could be that, because we cannot test at all the [F1] circuits, we need to be more conservative in some places, so that the tyres can survive, but the show doesn't benefit as everyone would want. It must be understood that 2011 is our first year."
This year's Canadian Grand Prix was enlivened by the differing characteristics of the two Bridgestone compounds taken to Montreal, and the Japanese company has abandoned its policy of keeping two steps between its choices at other events in an effort to contribute to the show.