Pirelli: “Blistering did not affect performance”

Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Although Pirelli brought the three softest compounds of tyre to the Austrian Grand Prix, the low level of degradation ensured that the majority of the field was able to complete the 71-lap race after just a single stop.

Thanks to the overall durability, the ultrasoft – the purple-walled softest compound – was able to manage a total of 44 laps on the Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen.

As the race wore on a number of drivers reported tyre blistering, but Pirelli was adamant that any blisters did not affect the overall lap times of the drivers.

“With some very fast average speeds and no rain, there was a bit of blistering but this did not affect performance – with the fastest laps being set at the end of the race,” said Mario Isola, the racing manager of Pirelli.

“Although one stop was the standard choice, there were many different variations on the one-stop strategy, with a few drivers trying something different to make up places.”

Most drivers opted to use the two softest compounds – the supersoft and ultrasoft, although some drivers attempted longer runs on the soft tyres.

“On the whole, the strategy options were quite aggressive throughout the field, with some long runs even on the ultrasoft,” Isola added. “This underlines the confidence that the teams have both in the speed and durability of the tyre range.”