Pirelli wet tyre test, Abu Dhabi, 2011

De la Rosa says “Pirelli is ready for F1″ after wet test

Pedro de la Rosa gave the thumbs-up to Pirelli’s tyres after concluding a test in Abu Dhabi.

He used the manufacturer’s complete range of dry and wet tyres in the test including intermediate and full wets.

The wet weather running was conducted on the north loop of the track, measuring 3.1km, which was artificially dampened using 140,000 litres of water.

De la Rosa did around 700km of running. Pirelli say they have accumulated 20,000km since their tests began in August.

De la Rosa said:

In my opinion, Pirelli is ready now for Formula One. The dry tyre test went very well, and confirmed everything we had learned in Bahrain the week before.

But the most original part of the test was when we were running at night on the wet tyres, which was as new an experience for me as it was for everyone else. The most important thing was that the water levels were consistent, which allowed us to have some accurate results from the test.

At the end of it, we?σΤιΌΤδσve come up with two tyres ?σΤιΌΤΗ£ wet and intermediate ?σΤιΌΤΗ£ which I believe are both competitive and stable.
Pedro de la Rosa

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27 thoughts on “De la Rosa says “Pirelli is ready for F1″ after wet test”

  1. Don’t know about Singapore, dusty enclosed etc, but a wet race in Abu Dhabi would be stunning. Glowing vapour trails, car’s weaving down the straight.

    Singapore might well be too dangerous but would probably look even better. Especially cars with EBD’s. Vortexe’s galore.

      1. Especially as it seems unlikely they are changing the track to make it better until then – with some wetness we’d get some action on top of those great images.

      1. … Because after refuelling was banned, F1 was concerned that teams would bolt on one set of tyres before the start and follow each other home in a train, hospitalizing and killing half the crowd due to boredom.

        Hence at least one pit-stop to try and shake things up.

        The root problem of course was the indestructable Bridgestones (50laps on a set of softs ffs, lack of competitor = risk averse tyres, cheers Max) … if Pirelli can stick to their commitment to engineer “racier” tyres then 1 mandatory pitstop will be the least of the teams worries, 2 or 3 stops will be routine.

        If that were to be the case, you then might see the rule dropped, to give us the chance (in theory) to see everything from no-stoppers to 3-stoppers.

        An interesting photo, a screengrab from the Pirelli evaluation sheets, showing how they classify tyres:

        http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii14/defjam99b/pirelli.jpg

        … wouldn’t have minded seeing it after a few more of those crosses had been filled-in.
        The mental abilities required to reliably and accurately complete that sheet also shows us what is meant by “a good test-driver”.

        1. Switching to a single tyre supplier was always going to be bad for the racing. Especially going with Bridgestone. They showed themselves to be too conservative with tyre design twice (2003 and 2005) during the peak of the tyre war.

          I have a simpler system to produce competitive tyres without favouring one team or driving up development costs. Have two “Official FIA tyre suppliers” who compete for a tyre manufacturer’s trophy. Half the teams run one marque’s tyres at each race, half run the other. The order of which team runs which tyre at each race can be determined at the start of the season. That way the tyres have to work well, but they can’t work with only one kind of suspension set-up (which was the problem with the Ferrari-Bridgestone partnership).

          The two teams at the bottom of the championship table can test for the tyre companies on the Monday after the race. Costs will be covered in the price each team pays for tyres at the beginning of the year.

          The best part is that this can be scaled up to 3 or 4 tyre companies very easily if the situation arises.

          1. The tyre manufacturers are in the sport for promotional reasons. The system you propose makes it hard for the tyre manufacturers to develop strategies in the long term.

            It runs into problems if one tyre is even slightly better. Teams on the inferior tyre will endlessly complain about being burdened with the poorer tyre…not good.
            Other things are associations with teams. During the Bridgestone/Michelin tyre war, Bridgestone heavily featured Ferrari in their promotional materials. Being the “Official tyre supplier to Ferrari” was better than “Official F1 tyre supplier” or “Official tyre supplier to Jordan and Minardi.”

          2. I know they’re in F1 only for the publicity which is why I suggested a tyre manufacturer’s championship as well.

            Though I doubt people will buy a tyre just because the manufacturer won a prize.

  2. Have Pirelli done any other notable wet weather testing except for Abu Dhabi? I know a substantial amount of water was used to cool the track, but it was artificial, and the water that was on the track started evaporating as soon as it was on the tarmac.

      1. Yeah, 140 000 liters is an awful lot! And at the moment the temperatures in the UAE in the evenings are relatively cool (low 20′s) so the water should have hung around for a while.

    1. From what Pedro DlR says, the water was on track for a longer time wihtout evaporating, enabling consistent wet running.
      I think they are doing fine wiht the development, as Bleu mentions Pirelli had some testing at Paul Ricard before this, but this test was meant to choose the (almost) definitive compounds for wet and intermediate tyres.

      1. From the sound of it, this test was mostly a sort of rehearsal for the F1 testing sessions and the season. In case testing doesn’t include wet running, they have decided on wet and intermediates, and for the dry running, they probably decided on what the likely compounds will be – but those will be tested by the teams in the first test, and only then finalised.

        I think it is all done pretty solidly, and it seems de la Rosa is doing a great job – pity for him he isn’t in a race seat, but this testing stuff is definitely something that he appears good at.

    1. I think he could have made more of this too – think if this would have been Fernandes, or Branson, they’d have made an event of it, possibly including some charity.

  3. Joe Saward gives some indication on the colours used to discern the different types of compound in his blog:

    The latest reports suggest that super-soft tyres will be red; soft white; medium blue and hard yellow. In wet conditions the full wets will be yellow and the intermediates red. The only confusion likely will be in drying conditions when drivers switch from wet to dry tyres.

    http://joesaward.wordpress.com/2011/01/20/ave-pirelli/

    That would be a pretty big improvement from the silly green stripes painted on them.

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