Formula 1

Pirelli’s Mario Isola: Chinese GP tyre choice gives “several different possibilities for strategy”

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Credit: Red Bull Content Pool (Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Mario Isola has said that Pirelli‘s unconventional tyre choice for the Chinese Grand Prix will create the possibility for several strategies.

Pirelli have chosen the ultra-soft, soft and medium compounds, opting to leave out the super-soft tyre for a more “evenly-spaced” choice, as Formula 1 looks to move away from one-stop races.

“The new wider range of 2018 P Zero compounds have allowed us to come up with some nominations this year where there is a gap in the tyres selected,” said Isola.

“In the case of China, alongside the medium, we jump from soft to ultra-soft, leaving out the super-soft.”

Isola explained the decision by saying that the softer compounds – barring the new, yet to be raced hyper-soft – are too similar in performance and degradation.

“There’s quite a big gap from medium to the softer compounds, which are quite close together,” he added.

“So, by missing out the super-soft in China, we end up with three choices that are quite evenly spaced out, which in turn opens up several different possibilities for strategy.”

The Italian also said that the teams have chosen various different quantities of the ultra-soft tyre, all dependent on their approach to Qualifying and race strategies.

“These strategy calculations have of course already begun, with teams selecting different quantities of the ultra-soft heading into the race.

“We could also see some different approaches to qualifying as well.”

Isola is hopeful that the tyre choices will add to the already present challenges and and spectacle of the Chinese race, an event that is seen as one of the most unpredictable on the calendar.

“With China being an unpredictable race anyway, thanks to a number of different overtaking opportunities and notoriously variable weather, this tyre nomination introduces another parameter.

“It should hopefully contribute to an even better spectacle.”

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DTM, Formula 1 writer and deputy editor for The Checkered Flag. Autosport Academy member and freelance voice over artist.
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