Pirelli boss Mario Isola hopes the upcoming Abu Dhabi tyre test will provide Formula 1 teams with a clearer picture of its new compounds for the 2020 season.

F1 teams and drivers were critical of Pirelli’s new tyres after testing them for the first time during United States Grand Prix practice, but Isola insisted conditions were not representative due to the unusually cooler track temperatures seen on Friday in Austin.

A further two-day evaluation is scheduled for December 3-4 following this weekend’s season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at the Yas Marina Circuit.

“The feedback was mixed,” Isola said.

“I believe that we had quite difficult conditions in Austin. It was very cold and the new tyres are designed with a different philosophy.

“So the plan now is to test them again in Abu Dhabi where we have a two-day test planned specifically for testing the new construction and new compounds, so we will have a comparison that is more reliable compared to Austin.

“We tested this new construction during the year with the teams and with their cars and we found an improvement in terms of overheating, in terms of compounds with a wider working range.

“But mainly the new construction was designed because every year the performance of the cars is increasing and obviously we have to follow this increase in performance.

“If we don’t change the construction, the only possibility is to raise the starting pressure – and raising the starting pressure is making the overheating worse and the behaviour of the tyre in general worse.

“The new construction has been designed with the target to keep the pressure as low as possible, according to the improvement in the performance of the cars.”

Team bosses agreed in Austin that the championship would be better to stick to Pirelli’s 2019 range for next year if the gains it hoped to make with the 2020 compounds were not achieved.

“I hope that we can have a test in Abu Dhabi that is more representative,” Isola added.

“I fully understand during the race weekend all the teams are focussed on the race weekend itself, so they cannot adjust the set-up of the car – the aero-balance of the car – and the new tyres have a different profile.

“They are wider, especially on the rear, and this has an impact on the downforce of the car, as well as the balance of the car.

“So, we need a bit more time to test them properly on long runs, to understand if we achieve this target. After that, obviously we are very happy to discuss the result of the test and to see what is better for the sport.”

 

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