Pirelli's new 'ultrasoft' F1 tyre will make its debut, as expected, at the Canadian Grand Prix in June, following the company's announcement of the compound options for the seventh round of the 2016 season.
With the teams being given the opportunity to choose tyre options this season, the regulations have been tweaked so that choices for long-haul events, such as Montreal, now have to be made 14 weeks in advance, whereas the European races carry an eight-week deadline.
The ultrasoft, which has been introduced over the winter to add another strategic option to he 2016 season, has been named as the assigned tyre for Q3 at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, while both the yellow-ringed soft and red-ringed supersoft will also be on offer for the 10-12 June event, with each needing to carry at least two sets of the soft into raceday.
Following on from the 2016 regulations, each driver must save one set of the softest of the three nominated compounds for the final phase of qualifying, hence the ultrasoft's starring role on Saturday. This set will be given back to Pirelli after Q3 for those who qualify in the top ten, but the remaining drivers will keep it for the race – as is the case currently. The teams are then free to choose the remaining sets available to each driver, with a maximum of 13 sets for the weekend.
Drivers got their first taste of the latest Pirelli rubber during this past week's Barcelona group test, and made the most of the opportunity to run on the ultrasoft with the deadline for nominations looming on Thursday.