Pirelli’s Mario Isola: “No Surprises” Over One Stops at Abu Dhabi GP


Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Pirelli Motorsport‘s Head of Car Racing, Mario Isola says that there were no surprises over strategy at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with a one-stop strategy proven to be the preferred strategy.

Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team‘s Valtteri Bottas won the race with a simple Ultrasoft to Supersoft strategy call on lap 21 that saw him convert his third win of the season.

The Italian tyre manufacturer expected everyone to pit at least once in the race and they were proven right, with all drivers during the race used the Ultrasoft and Supersoft tyres. Everyone made at least one stop with the exclusion of Lance Stroll, who made three stops during the grand prix.

With the smooth asphalt surface of the Yas Marina Circuit and the cooling temperatures in the twilight race, the one stop was the preferred call for the race.

Isola says they expected a wide pit stop window and that the attempt undercut was difficult to make around Abu Dhabi.

“No surprises at all for anyone during the last race of the season, with Bottas taking adeserved win from pole using a one-stop strategy” said Isola.

“Coming into this race, we thought there would be a wide pit stop window, and this proved to be exactly the case.”

“We saw a few teams trying to gain track position by attempting to undercut their direct rivals, but on the whole, nobody could really make this tactic stick.”

With the season now concluded, Pirelli will now focus it’s attention on the 2018 season. With the post-Abu Dhabi Grand Prix test this week, it gives the Italian tyre company a chance to try out their new tyre allocations for next year with the Hypersoft and Superhard tyre set to be introduced.

Isola says the test of the new tyres will help them decide on which tyre compounds to bring for next years twenty one race calendar.

“Our attention now focuses firmly on 2018, with drivers remaining here to test the new tyre range for the first time, which we presented on Thursday.”

“The softer compounds will be particularly well suited to this track, and it will be very interesting to see how the new hypersoft goes: what we learn from this test will start to influence where we nominate it next year.”