Pirelli Hope Tyre Choice Allows Drivers To Push At Spa-Francorchamps

by Craig Edwards
Mario Isola

Pirelli Motorsport’s Mario Isola says the Belgian Grand Prix will give the tyres their biggest test of the season at Spa-Francorchamps.

The famous Spa circuit is the longest track on the Formula 1 calendar and is one of the favourite circuits amongst the drivers.

Isola and Pirelli have chosen the three hardest tyre compounds for this weekend’s race and Isola hopes the tyre choose means drivers can push rather than tyre manage throughout the race.

“Spa is always an amazing drivers’ circuit but that is also why the tyres are put under some of the biggest stresses that they face all season.

“As a result, we’ve nominated the three hardest compounds in the range – a slightly different choice to last year – which should allow the drivers to push to the maximum during each stint and minimise the need for pace management.”

The trio of tyres being used in Spa was also used at Silverstone earlier in the season and Isola is hoping for another terrific race.

“The harder choice this year at Silverstone, for example, led to a very closely-fought race and a fastest lap from Lewis Hamilton right at the end on well-used tyres.”

Pirelli have seen their tyres already race at Spa this year in the Spa 24 Hours race and Isola says the conditions could have an impact this weekend, like it did last year in qualifying which created a mixed up top ten that saw Esteban Ocon secure third place on the grid.

“We know a lot about Spa, also from our experience of supplying the Spa 24 Hours.

“Last month’s race there was stopped by rain for several hours, which underlines the likelihood of mixed weather conditions, with qualifying for last year’s Belgian Grand Prix run in the wet as well.”

Last year saw most drivers go with a one stop strategy but Isola thinks an aggressive two stop may be an option this year.

“This is a track where it’s very possible to overtake, so under the right circumstances, it’s feasible to make an aggressive strategy work.”

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