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So what's all the fuss with the tyres?

With only one tyre manufacturer in Formula One, the reason behind having two different sets of tyres is to make sure that we as fans and the world's media do actually discuss the tyres.

If the teams all had brand spanking new rubber each race and they all wore out at the same rate, Pirelli wouldn't get much of a mention because there would be nothing to discuss.

Last season with Bridgestones tyre choices, many spectators complained that the tyres lasted far too long and didn't help to contribute towards exciting racing.

Drivers were far better off looking after their tyres and driving conservatively, rather than racing them until they wore out, stopping and then running again.

With that exact point in mind Pirelli have designed new tyres for the 2011 season. With the soft tyre losing pace within just a few laps and wearing down faster than last season’s Bridgestones, this should create more exciting racing with drivers running at faster speeds at different points during a Grand Prix and the possibility of more pit stops.

But not all the drivers are convinced it is the right move. 'I think there will be more overtaking, It's easier for us to look average. You're even talking to yourself in the cockpit 'come on Mark, that was messy, that was scrappy', it's very easy to be losing time when the tyre goes away a little bit, so you've got to have that in mind.” Red Bull driver Mark Webber told Autosport Magazine after Sunday’s testing in Barcelona.

'If that was in a race situation and someone was on a different strategy then we might have some racing, but the only thing we've got to keep an eye on, unfortunately, is that we're going to have such a big difference in speed that if someone is doing something different and you're trying to go longer or whatever, it won't be a fight, you'll just go straight through and disappear. (or of course straight over and do a triple somersault and end up in the tyre wall – if you have no idea what I’m talking about feel free to YouTube “Webber Crash Valencia 2010”)

Unsurprisingly due to his driving style Lewis Hamilton also doesn’t appear to be a big fan of the new tyres after Sunday’s test session. 'It's very strange. Even last year when we had heavy fuel and you had to drive it a little bit easier at the beginning of the race to preserve the tyres,'

'Today I probably drove a little bit easier on the first long run, but the tyres just go away so fast and there's nothing you can do about it.”

The complaints didn’t just start and end with the dry weather compounds either, with Force India's Adrian Sutil slamming the new tyres. 'It's very different. Pirelli is not good in the rain, the tyres are not lasting long and it's just very slow compared to Bridgestone.

If the drivers are complaining all that means is that there is a level of difficulty that the tyres bring that they are not yet comfortable with and if the drivers are finding the going difficult, then they are more likely to make mistakes and mistakes lead to overtaking opportunities and drama.

So the new tyres sound perfect!

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The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday February 21 2011

Time: 10:20AM

Your Comments

I bet Bridgestone are loving all the "not as good as Bridgestone" quotes!

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