Mario Isola said all three tyre compounds coped well with the extremely hot conditions at the Hockenheimring on Friday, with track temperatures hitting a remarkable fifty-eight degrees centigrade.
The Pirelli Motorsport boss was pleased that despite these intense temperatures and with the subsequent thermal degradation levels, the soft tyre was still able to perform well, with that tyre currently offering around six-tenths of a second advantage over the medium compound over one lap.
Pirelli has brought the C2, C3 and C4 compounds to the German Grand Prix weekend, with Charles Leclerc currently setting the pace for Scuderia Ferrari using the soft C4, his fastest lap of 1:13.449 just 0.124 seconds clear of team-mate Sebastian Vettel.
“There’s currently a performance gap of around 0.6 seconds between soft and medium, with a slightly smaller gap between medium and hard,” said Isola.
“The overriding characteristic of today was intense heat, with track temperatures well in excess of 55 degrees centigrade, which were among the highest we have ever seen in Formula 1. This meant that the drivers had to look after the rear tyres in particular, but in spite of the extreme heat, all three compounds coped well with the conditions: even the soft, which set fastest time today.”
With weather conditions expected to cool down and with rain forecasted, Isola says it could be a more unpredictable weekend in Germany, with the frontrunning teams all seemingly closely matched after Friday’s running.
“All three compounds look well-suited to the track and the current conditions, but it’s hard to know exactly how the weather will evolve over the rest of the weekend – with some rain expected from tomorrow,” said Isola.
“If that’s the case, as happened last year too, then it will lend yet another interesting element to a weekend that’s already proving quite hard to predict, with close gaps among the frontrunners.”