Sauber technical director James Key says the performance of the Pirelli super soft tyre will be one of the most interesting aspects of the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend.
The race will be the first this season where the super soft tyre has been used, with the only previous running for teams coming during pre-season testing in Spain.
Given the different nature of the Monaco circuit compared to Barcelona and Jerez, Key said the teams would need to re-learn how the super soft tyre will perform with questions over how long it will last on the Monte Carlo streets.
“I think the things to watch out for will obviously be the tyres,” he said. “It is the first time this season we will be running the super soft tyre. We ran it in winter testing, but that was in Barcelona and Jerez, not in Monaco with a very slow speed track and possibly high track temperatures.
“We will have to re-learn a litte bit about how the super soft tyre is working, but certainly in winter testing it was quite a good tyre. It will be interesting to see how that lasts and how its degradation is. Then the soft tyre is the prime tyre which we are fairly familiar with, so there will be a bit of learning on that.”
With the team introducing new aerodynamic and mechanical parts for the weekend, both Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Perez will look to build on the points they scored in Spain.
For Perez, this weekend will mark his F1 debut on the Monaco streets although the Mexican has shown his pace in the principality having won in GP2 last year.
“I love that tight street circuit - it is one of my favourites,” he said. “Last year I won the GP2 feature race there and now I can't wait to get my first Monaco Grand Prix under my belt. It will be a very special weekend for me. It is the race I was waiting for and on this circuit a driver can make a bigger difference than on others.
“The atmosphere is great and, of course, it is the Grand Prix every driver wants to win in his career.”