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Tyres cause no concern at inaugural F1™ GP

The first F1™ race of 2014 kicked off in Melbourne and, despite huge changes to both the cars, qualifying and the usual driver merry-go-round, for the first time in memory, the tyres barely got a mention!

Unlike previous seasons where the sports supplier, Pirelli, came under intense scrutiny following a succession of failures and ongoing driver criticism concerning reliability, this year everything appears to be very much more straightforward for the Italian tyre giant. This year, the much revised engine and battery boost systems will be the cause of much debate and heartache for both teams and drivers alike.

For 2014 all teams will once again use the highly acclaimed and fully revised PIRELLI PZERO™ CINTURATO™ F1 tyres.

The season ahead, if the first race is anything to go by, promises to allow for more overtaking, less reliability and different race winners taking the top spot on the podium.

PIRELLI F1 TYRE INFORMATION

Not sure what all the varieties of tyres and their respective colour banding means? Here's the info directly from the manufacturer!

Source: www.pirelli.com/tyre/ww/en/f1/tyre-range

Front tyre size - 245x13

Rear tyre size  - 325x13

THE SLICK TYRES

Dry weather tyres, known as slicks, are characterised by a tread pattern that is devoid of blocks or channels. They come in four compounds: supersoft, soft, medium and hard. The different compounds mean that the tyres are well suited to a wide variety of circuits, according to the type of asphalt, the number and severity of the corners, and the top speed on the straights. This allows the teams to make use of an ample range of strategies. For each track, Pirelli - in accordance with the FIA - nominates the two dry compounds best suited to the tracks characteristics and the temperature to be expected.

WET WEATHER TYRES

Wet weather tyres, characterised by grooves in the tread pattern, are split into two types: full wets and intermediates. The full wet tyres can be easily recognised by the deep grooves in the tread pattern and sipes to drain off water on wet asphalt. The intermediates feature channels that are less deep and are designed for damp or slightly wet surfaces, as well as uncertain weather conditions.

P Zero™ Red Supersoft. The softest compound in the range is ideal for slow and twisty circuits, especially in cold weather, when maximum mechanical grip is needed. The supersoft benefits from an extremely rapid warm-up time, which makes it ideal in qualifying as well, but the flip side to that important characteristic is of course increased degradation. This is a low working range compound. One of the key evolutions this year has been optimisation of the footprint pressure and temperature distribution. This presents a more even contact with the asphalt, improving grip and handling.

P Zero™ Yellow Soft This is one of the most frequently-used tyres in the range, striking a very good balance between performance and durability, with the accent on performance. It is still biased towards speed rather than long distances, but is nonetheless capable of providing teams with a competitive advantage both at the beginning of the race on full fuel and when used as a 'sprint' tyre at the end. This is a high working range compound.

P Zero™ White Medium. Theoretically this is the most perfectly balanced of all the tyres, with an ideal compromise between performance and durability. As a result, it is extremely versatile, but it often comes into its own on circuits that tend towards high speeds, temperatures, and energy loadings. This is a low working range compound

P Zero™ White Medium. Theoretically this is the most perfectly balanced of all the tyres, with an ideal compromise between performance and durability. As a result, it is extremely versatile, but it often comes into its own on circuits that tend towards high speeds, temperatures, and energy loadings. This is a low working range compound

P Zero™ Orange Hard. The toughest tyre in Pirelli's range is designed for the circuits that put the highest energy loadings through the tyres, with fast corners or abrasive surfaces, and are often characterised by high ambient temperatures. The compound takes longer to warm up, but offers maximum durability - which frequently means that it plays a key role in race strategy. This is a high working range compound.

Cinturato™ Green Intermediate. The intermediates are the most versatile of the rain tyres, dispersing approximately 25 litres of water per second at full speed. They can be used on a wet as well as a drying track. This is the only tyre that has not changed compared to last year.

Cinturato™ Blue Wet. The full wet tyres can disperse up to 65 litres of water per second at full speed (increased from 60 litres last year), making them the most effective solution for heavy rain. The latest evolution of the Cinturato Blue means that it is also effective on a drying track, with increased durability. The full wet tyre has a new compound and a redesigned rear tread pattern to further reduce aquaplaning. The result of this intensive work is increased driveability in a wide variety of conditions.

 


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