The Formula One Group does not make many statements. And when they do it is usually relating to something that is important to the sport. Thus, the issuing of a press release on Thursday regarding Pirelli tyres indicates that Pirelli is mightily pissed off with the way that F1 has been treating it. The company, you may recall, came in for a bunch of flak two years ago when Red Bull wanted the tyres changed to suit their cars. There were some tyre blow-outs at Silverstone and Pirelli was forced to change the construction o the tyres – and Red Bull won everything for the rest of the year. After that Pirelli went quiet, supplied harder tyres and waited for F1 to come begging for more performance, to make the racing more interesting. The fact that the same sort of thing is happening again now, underlines the fact that Pirelli is weary with the criticism. You cannot really blame the Italian firm because it has been encouraged from the start to provide tyre compounds that have performance limitations which allow tyre degradation to play a part in the races, which creates a challenge for the teams and better racing for the fans.
“When doing so, Pirelli provides strong guidance to competitors about any performance limitations of the tyres supplied,” the Formula One group said. “Competitors should heed Pirelli’s expert advice when setting their race strategy and tactics, and if they do not, it is at their own risk. We are entirely satisfied that Pirelli was not at fault for any tyre-related incidents during the 2015 Formula 1 Shell Belgian Grand Prix.”
This is a very public slap down for Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari, who have been making a song and dance about the German’s tyre failure in Belgian.
“Pirelli has offered to provide to each car a single set of tyres to last for an entire event,” the statement said. “While we know that they would be very capable of it, a race with no pit stops would be less exciting. Thank you, Pirelli, for helping us to deliver excitement to Formula One fans!”
Or to put it another way: “Hang in there, chaps, we’ll smack down the uppity members of the F1 community.”
Get the message Seb?