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War of words over tyres heats up

The paper's correspondent Kevin Eason said that by hobbling F1 cars to speeds little better than those in the GP2 support event, the current tyre rules had left the Grand Prix races with no structure as drivers yo-yo'd up and down the timescreens with little apparent reason.

"The anoraks will get it and love it, but the casual observer watching on television was probably utterly dazzled by the frenzy," he wrote.

Judging from the social media reaction even the 'anoraks' are at their wits' end with the situation. But some media pundit are flying Pirelli's colours in the debate and insisting that the situation isn't as bad as it's painted.

"F1 loves a villain and this year Pirelli has been cast into this pantomime role," wrote NBC Sports pit lane reporter Will Buxton after covering the race in Spain. "Hermann Tilke used to get the blame for ruining the show for his apparently dreadful circuit design. But is it not the job of the teams to design a car for the circuits on which the championship races? Of course it is. Just as it is the job of the teams to design a car that maximizes the tyres on which it runs.

"Pirelli has become too easy a target," Buxton added. "What Ferrari showed in Barcelona was that yes you may have to make more pitstops than we've seen in the past, but that it is possible to push from the moment the lights go out to the moment that the flag falls. That so much of the press is decrying the race shows, I believe, a disappointing cynicism."

Writing on his blog, Buxton declared this weekend's race a "game changer" because the victory had gone to the team that had set aside the tyre tactics game and just gone all-out for the win right from the start - just like the good old days that everyone says they want to see return.

"Did they drive to a delta? Did they try and make one fewer stop than their rivals? Did they hell. They went out and they pushed. Every. Single. Lap," he wrote. "It was an absolute joy to behold."

It seems that whichever way the tyre battle goes on and off the track for the remainder of 2013, there are going to be some unhappy people at the end of it. Which makes this a pretty typical year in F1, all things considered.



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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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