Pirelli Still Seeking Reasons Behind Buemi’s Silverstone Tyre Test Crash

by Paul Hensby

Pirelli Motorsport is still investigating the reasons behind the tyre failure that caused Sebastien Buemi to crash at the first turn during the tyre test at Silverstone just after the British Grand Prix.

Buemi was back behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car for Red Bull Racing and partaking in the tyre test when a failure around the left rear tyre saw him lose control and hit the barriers last Wednesday, with Mario Isola, Pirelli’s Head of F1 and Car Racing, revealing tests are underway to find the exact cause.

It was not the first time this tyre had been used having been utilised by Alfa Romeo Racing in the post-Austrian Grand Prix test, while Red Bull and Williams Racing had already used it at Silverstone prior to Buemi’s off.

“We are investigating the tyre,” said Isola to Motorsport.com. “It takes some time because we had the tyre back from Silverstone at the beginning of the week.  Obviously it requires an extensive investigation, together with Red Bull we are working to understand the reason for this failure, and where it started from.

“The same prototype was tested at Spielberg, with Alfa Romeo, and it was tested on day one in Silverstone with both Williams and Red Bull. It was a construction that was already well known and already tested.

“It was the in-lap of the run, it happened in Turn One. The rear left is in pieces, but we have to investigate on the other three from the same set, and the other prototypes of the same type.”

Red Bull has supplied the video footage from onboard cameras of the crash to help assist Pirelli in finding the cause of the failure, with Isola admitting there is still a lot to establish before they can be certain of what pitched Buemi into the barriers.

“We have all the videos, we have the onboard cameras that were fitted on the car, we have the telemetry of the car,” added Isola.  “We have a lot of data to analyse, that’s why it’s taking a bit of time.

“It’s not very, very clear. You see the tyre and the rear suspension is breaking down altogether, so it’s difficult to understand what happened exactly. But it’s a good help to have footage from a GoPro, from the circuit, and so on.

“Obviously it is a priority for us, we have people dedicated to that, we want to discover as soon as possible. We don’t have another test tomorrow, but we want to know in advance.”

Isola insists no stone will be left unturned as they seek for answers, with early indications saying that there are no particular concerns about the makeup of the tyre, the production process or the way the tyres are testing in an indoor environment before being track tested.

“We want to conclude this investigation by next week, and hopefully we can find something,” he revealed.  “We don’t want to exclude anything, to make sure we are investigating 360 degrees, not forgetting anything.

“We are taking into consideration the tyre, the materials, the interaction with the car, and so on. I don’t have any element which is giving us a direction.  I cannot confirm or deny anything until I have evidence. If we find evidence of any type then we can address the investigation on a specific cause of the failure.

“But at the moment all the investigations are saying that there is nothing wrong with the tyre or with the material or the production process or with the indoor testing, so it’s difficult to tell you if we are going in this direction or that direction.”

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