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War of words over tyres heats up

Boullier said there is nothing wrong with the current Pirelli tyres, and added that it would be unfair the currently successful teams like Lotus to start making changes to the compounds midway through the season to benefit those that are struggling.

"In some ways it's not fair, but we have to deal with it," he pointed out. "The question is not the tyres. If our car can do it, it is because we did something to allow our car to do it.

"It's the same tyres for everybody," he continued. "There was some slight change here that was supposed to please the complaining teams. I don't think Pirelli is going to change anything. They were asked to bring tyres that last 20 laps and they did it."

Other teams such as McLaren are somewhere in the middle of the debate, aware that there is a problem that can be "a bit frustrating" for the teams and the drivers, but not wanting to make it worse by overreacting with crude solutions.

"Pirelli knows we're right on the cusp of being too delicate," said McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh in Barcelona. "Some people would say it's part of the show, and I don't want to criticise because it's very easy to do so, but we have to be a bit careful.

"There will be some teams that are slightly more miffed than we are and it's tough," he added. "You can't always get it right and we have to give credit to Pirelli that there have been some races that have been enhanced by the tyre challenge - but also some races that have been degraded."

Fan reaction to the pitstop-tastic spectacle at the Circuit de Catalunya this weekend was been broadly negative, and the majority of the sporting media has been scathing in their Monday morning editions.

UK newspaper The Guardian said the current rules were making the sport "contrived and tedious" with only the start and the finish of the race being worth watching. "You may as well watch a football match for the 90 minutes in between times," wrote Paul Weaver after this weekend's race, adding that even the F1 star drivers are "growing increasingly fed up with engineers warning them to back off to save tyres."

Britain's Daily Telegraph called the race a demonstration of "the tyranny of the tyre," with journalist Oliver Brown opining that "once again this season, the race was mired in a complex subtext of tyre degradation, as the narrative of the afternoon became clouded by an astonishing 82 pit stops and uncertainty over how quickly a set of medium compounds might shred to pieces."

London's The Times declared that "F1 racing is in danger of becoming Fred Karno's Circus, featuring drivers trained for perfection but reduced performing every instruction of their engineers."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
09.09.2012- Race, Dietrich Mateschitz (AUT), Owner of Red Bull (Red Bull Racing)
22.11.2012- Christian Horner (GBR), Red Bull Racing, Sporting Director
24.11.2012- Qualifying, Martin Whitmarsh (GBR), Chief Executive Officer Mclaren
Eric Boullier (FRA), Team Manager Lotus F1 Team
21.04.2013- Race, Stefano Domenicali (ITA), Team Principal and Paul Hembery, Pirelli Motorspor Director
20.04.2012- Free Practice 3, Paul Hembery, Pirelli Motorspor Director
12.05.2013- Pirelli Tyre
Sebastien Ogier, Red Bull, RB7, F1 test [Credit: Red Bull Content Pool]
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13

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KevinW - Unregistered

May 13, 2013 3:44 PM

When all anyone talks about is the tires, F1 becomes nothing more than a tire strategy spec race. It's lost its luster as a max effort race series because of it. It is now a greater bore with all the faked tire wear and passing aides than it was when dominant teams were rewarded with real race results. Just because it looks like racing on TV, does not mean its actually racing. The FIA is killing the golden goose with these stupid tactics.

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