After a few weeks away Formula 1 is back this weekend with the incredibly historic and popular Belgian Grand Prix, at the notorious Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps where the weather is always a prime factor.
Spa is one of the most demanding tracks on the calendar for Pirelli’s tyres, with the vast amount of elevation change putting an incredible amount of force through the tyres. Pirelli have chosen the second hardest range for this weekend as they did in 2020, with the C2, C3 and C4 compound tyre being in operation.
Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps see’s the tyres put under immense pressure through the Eau Rouge-Raidillon complex, before having plenty of time to cool down the Kemmel straight, making it a challenge for drivers not too lock up as they brake for Les Combes.
Last year’s race was won by Lewis Hamilton who completed a successful medium to hard compound tyre one stop, after taking advantage of a safety car early on in the race after George Russell and Antonio Giovinazzi collided heavily.
Head of F1 and Car Racing at Pirelli Mario Isola, is expecting an exciting grand prix this weekend where there could be a mix of strategies.
“The Belgian Grand Prix marks our third visit to Spa within a month in very different contexts, following the Spa 24 Hours, the Ypres Rally Belgium – which had its final day at Spa – and now Formula 1. The challenges of this track, especially when it comes to the weather, are well-known, as are the loads placed on the tyres.
“Last year the top three qualified on the medium tyre, while the soft offered a good step up in grip but required more management, and so was not considered to be an optimal race tyre. The majority of drivers went from medium to hard, with the pit stop dictated by the safety car at lap 11 for most of them. So we could see an interesting mix of strategies this year.”