[Pirelli in race to ready 2024 F1 tyres after testing revamp
Prototypes will be run by Alpine and Red Bull in a test at Monza after the Italian GP and by all teams on the Fridays of the Japanese and Mexican GPs
The Italian company dedicated all its in-season slick testing up to July to its no-blanket tyres, which it hoped would be approved for 2024.
However, at Spa the F1 Commission agreed to stick with blankets for at least one more season, so Pirelli has had to hurriedly switch its focus back to standard tyres for next year.
The challenge is that every season, Pirelli has to develop its tyres to deal with higher downforce levels predicted for the following year, and the previous emphasis on no blankets means that it now has a limited amount of time and running with which to develop and sign off a definitive design for 2024.
However, it has been able to adjust its production to ensure that it can use the Monza test to narrow down its choices, with a focus on the construction, which will have to be approved by the FIA in mid-September.
For the Suzuka and Mexico City Friday running, teams will try different compound options. A split isn’t always the case in Friday race weekend prototype running, as sometimes in the past all drivers have run identical tyres.
The compounds have to be approved by December 1, just after the definitive 2024 tyres are run by all teams in the test following the Abu Dhabi GP.
Pirelli technicians work on some tyres
Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images
“We know the cars have continuous development,” said Pirelli chief engineer Simone Berra when asked about the testing by Motorsport.com.
“It’s important to continuously improve the reliability and the fatigue resistance of the tyre, and the resistance to the standing wave, because of the loads.
“We would also like to improve the current range of compounds, working mainly on the compounds that showed a little bit less performance than expected.”
Pirelli has to create a construction that can deal with the expected increase loads up to the end of 2024, based on what the teams have predicted.
“The teams uploaded the simulations at the end of June,” Berra noted. “So we had the time, a couple of months, to process all the data, and to understand what the destination is in terms of load for next year. And we have seen some increase.
“We are continuing to include new materials, new structure, geometry. So we are working as much as possible.
“Obviously, there is a limit at some point, and you have to change philosophy, but for the moment we have seen good results working on the current structure, and improving with different new solutions.
“We are working on the sidewalls, we are working on the bead areas, we are working together with our R&D team to improve as much as possible the structure.”