Whitmarsh expects tougher tyre challenge in 2013

2013 Australian Grand Prix

Sergio Perez, McLaren, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh expects the new generation of tyres for 2013 to give teams more trouble.

“I think we do believe that the new Pirelli tyres will be a little bit more challenging than those we’ve had recently in terms of their ability to grain and to wear,” he said during a Vodafone McLaren Mercedes phone-in.

“I think a high degradation which is arguably good for the show – actually, inarguably good for the show – would undoubtedly be a headache for those of us trying to race to win. But I think it’s an interesting challenge and at the end of the day it’s the same for everyone.

“We’ve had situations before in the last few years where drivers and teams have been frustrated with the tyres but actually have had some great spectacles.”

Whitmarsh said he was reluctant to draw conclusions from testing as much of it had been conducted in temperatures that were below what is usually seen at an F1 race. But he added the cool conditions often seen in Shanghai, the venue for round three of the championship, could prove especially tricky.

Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery described their 2013 compounds as “the most focussed and performance-orientated tyres we have ever made”.

“All the compounds and constructions have changed for 2013, and the drivers should notice a wider working range and a bigger window of peak performance,” he added.

“The performance gaps between the compounds are also larger, which means that teams have a greater opportunity to use strategy to their advantage by exploiting the consequent speed differentials.”

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89 comments on Whitmarsh expects tougher tyre challenge in 2013

  1. Well one stop races are pretty much history. At the least there would be two stops. The tyre issues are really interesting and I have a feeling they will be more exciting in 2014 than the engines anyway. So let’s see.

    • timi (@timi) said on 11th March 2013, 12:51

      @aish

      I have a feeling they will be more exciting in 2014 than the engines anyway.

      Can I ask what gives you this feeling, especially since there currently isn’t even a tyre contract in place for 2014. .

      • Because as far as the tyres are concerned that won’t be a step down from what the situation currently presents itself. While the engine department has been a disappointing arithmetic regression, from V12 to V10 to V8 and now V6.
        Pirelli has done a good job over the years and they’ll get the contract, not too worried about it.

        • BS (@bs) said on 11th March 2013, 15:36

          @aish – V6, coupled to a turbo and a next generation Energy Recovery System.

          I know I’m a minority, but I’m quite looking forward to these changes. While the Tyres are idesigned to be an artificial handicap, there is no indication the engines will be down on power and unlike the tyres, Turbo engine development is technologically relevant. Coupled to an even more high tech energy recovery system which will output more power for longer, the 2014 power changes look quite promising.

          The amount of cylinders isn’t very exciting in itself, to me at least.

          • PieLighter (@pielighter) said on 11th March 2013, 15:56

            @bs re cylinders, probably because the screams of the V12 and V10 were universally loved, and this V6 turbo is an unknown quantity. Personally, I think the engines will sound like they did in the 80s (they were V6 turbos, right?) with a much higher pitch – these new ones will rev to 15k IIRC compared to the 10k or so of the 80s.

          • HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 16:54

            @bs, me too, I would rather we had an engine rule that said in full ” Engines shall burn 98 Octane pump petrol and not exceed 1000cc. in swept volume”.
            Then we could see who can design and build the most powerful,driveable,economical reliable engine, AND the reduced horsepower would force the teams to reduce the dependence on drag inducing downforce.

          • @bs: No don’t say like that, you’re not minority. We are all in one enormous majority who want to enjoy F1 till we get cataracts, I’m not very thorough with the engine specs like you are, probably it is for the better that they’re changing to V6 Turbo. I’d like to see new manufacturers.

          • @bs – I’m with you as well. I’m much looking forward to the new engineering challenges that will be posed, and would like it even more if the teams had more freedom in design at the expense of aerodynamic predominance, although I think the main issue with aerodynamics stems from the current regulations.

            I think a regulated ground effect and more development with the engines would strike a great balance.

      • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 11th March 2013, 13:10

        @aish – Tire issues are in no way interesting – it is just yet another problem of having one tyre supplier – basically, Pirelly controls the sport to some extent now.

        • Blackmamba (@blackmamba) said on 11th March 2013, 13:26

          @Shreyas Mohanty
          Are you saying you want 2 or more tyre suppliers in F1? Surely you haven’t forgotten that era where Bridgestone and Michelin essentially produced the perfect tyre that could last the whole race and the only exciting (if you can call it that) thing about the race was refuelling.
          Back then fans could expect to see two things, races dominated by the front end of the grid, and the back end of Schumacher’s Ferrari as it disappeared into the sunset. This opened the sport up to accusations of being boring and predictable, backed up by dwindling TV audiences at the time.

          • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 11th March 2013, 16:47

            @blackmamba : Yes, I am sayin there need to be 2 or more tyre suppliers. Note, I am not saying they make tires that last 60 laps, I am saying they make tires of the same degradation levels as that of say 2011 or 2012. But yes, I do believe F1′s tyre sector doesn’t need to be a Pirelli – dominated.

          • @blackmamba: +1. Well said, throughout. :)

          • BarnstableD (@barnstabled) said on 11th March 2013, 19:04

            @shreyasf1fan That’s the problem though: If you have a tyre war, the manufacturers will try produce tyres that are better than their rivals’ – that’s the point. No team would chose a tyre that lasts 15 laps as opposed to one that will go the whole race. So unless you somehow control how the tyres are produced (which defeats the purpose of multiple manufacturers), then you will not ever have multiple tyre manufacturers and tyres that don’t last 60 laps.

            This is why it’s a major positive for the sport that there is only one tyre supplier: it gives the manufacturer freesom to produce extreme tyres to challenge the teams. Although it can be said it is a fake way of producing exciting racing, it is doing exactly that – producing exciting racing. Pirelli aren’t getting bad press for producing tyres that fall apart, they are getting great advertising from the sport by producing excitement. Seeing as F1 tyre development is not at all relevent to road cars, that is the reason they are here.

            Long live Pirelli and their chewy tyres!

          • Boomerang said on 11th March 2013, 22:13

            What you mean ‘Long live Pirelli’ when their Rubber is of short due ;-)

          • beneboy (@beneboy) said on 11th March 2013, 23:25

            @blackmamba
            F1 didn’t start in 2001, there were multiple tire suppliers right up to the mid 1980′s and, in my opinion, the “show” was much better back then than it’s been for the last few years.

          • Mike (@mike) said on 12th March 2013, 3:05

            @beneboy

            Just no, don’t even do that. There is no way to put F1 back in time, it’s not possible. If you think of a way to have tyre suppliers both compete yet not produce tyres that will last a whole race, and yet still be safe to race on. Say it.

            But don’t do the “it used to be like that” thing.

    • HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 13:09

      @aish, what a bleak vision of the future you paint.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 11th March 2013, 17:17

      Thats what we said in 2011 before Perez made it a one stop race into the top 10 for Sauber on his debut @aish! I hope we still have drivers / cars that defy the logic of “a race needs 2-3 stops per car to be exiting”.

      • @bascb: We have the drivers, question is whether the equipments will allow them. I learned about the tyre wear from one of Ted’s Notebook videos. Maybe I just watched too many of them.

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 11th March 2013, 18:48

          yes, but we had the drivers saying much the same then after getting the first experience with the Pirelli tyres @aish, I think it was Trulli who said he expected up to 5-6 stops per race.
          Now is not much different, only we know by now that conditions in winter testing are quite differently with cold temperatures as well as the teams still learning about their cars and how to do setup on them.

    • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 12th March 2013, 11:41

      @barnstabled : The FIA could regulate the maximum lasting duration of a tire.

      • BarnstableD (@barnstabled) said on 12th March 2013, 14:34

        How? The tyre manufacturers would still want to make the best, fastest and most durable tyre. It’d be impossible to make all the manufacturers have tyres that degrade at exactly the same pace. You’d have to have a set rule saying the most laps a tyre can do is x. Then it would be stupid as teams would just do stints of x laps then throw away tyres that have plenty of life still in them (and all teams would always run stints of x laps to minimise the number of pit stops thus eliminating any tyre strategy).

        • Robbie (@robbie) said on 12th March 2013, 19:39

          Here’s my key thoughts on the topic of tires. Tire makers have said in the past that they want a competitor in F1 because otherwise everyone is on the same tires so tires don’t get mentioned, and so the maker doesn’t feel the marketing impact of being in F1. So they either end up leaving F1, or crying for a competitor so that at all times the tires that a certain driver/team is using get a mention.

          They only reason Pirelli is in F1 (could be any maker) is because they have happily agreed to make tires a big factor in the outcome of the races by making them so degrady that a big part of the story is how good or bad the teams are at adapting to the tires. Without being mandated to make their tires a ‘gadget’ of F1, they wouldn’t generally be interested as a sole maker. Make the tires more durable and predictable, and the tires aren’t the story, aren’t the limiting factor, so they don’t get talked about.

          I personally struggle with the ‘show’ that the tires produces because I know as I watch the races that Pirelli could do better, and that the drivers are limited from pushing. I don’t care so much that it is the same for everyone. I know tire conservation has always been a factor in all car racing, but to me it shouldn’t be an overwhelming factor.

          My ideal scenario…two or more makers (F1 is supposed to be a competition after all) making the best tires they can so that the drivers don’t have to spend all day worrying about being on the loud pedal, and much much less aero dependancy so that we don’t have the processions of the MS/Ferrari era. The processions seem to be entirely blamed on better, or at least more durable tires of the past, but to me it has always been much moreso about the dirty air effect, and as has been correctly pointed out, there weren’t always processions before. You don’t like processions, but you don’t mind a driver being afraid to push and kill his tires? Doesn’t make sense to me.

          So I don’t like the tires being the limiting factor that they are, I don’t like that they (Pirelli) have been mandated thus, which to me is the equivalent of a gadget, it puts an asterisk for me beside many of the passes that will have been made only because of huge speed differential in the cars due to the tires being at a different stage than other competitors, and it shows that F1 doesn’t have the ability to offer better, seat of the pants racing, without gadgets.

          Please reduce aero drastically, F1, and you’ll take care of many problems with F1, including the ‘need’ for the gadget that is DRS. As someone who has been watching since the late 70′s, this era has an asterisk beside it. It’s leaning too much for my liking toward the drivers being passengers, dictated in their performance by the tires. I’m not nearly as interested in seeing which team can outperform the other in adapting to tires, all the while knowing that has always been some degree of the game. I want to see driver vs. driver in as equivalent a format as possible such that I know it wasn’t a driver limited to compete at that particular moment that caused him to get passed, it was a better driver passing him on relatively equivalent equipment.

          F1, as the supposed pinnacle of racing, would be laughed out of the racing world if it mandated that all teams use the same car, and a car not nearly as good as it could be at that, and one that if you push it, it breaks…why is it acceptable to have only one tire maker making tires that we all know could be better. Why is it acceptable that this is to be the answer to F1′s struggle to make their racing close? Is it going to be BE’s ‘sprinklers at every track’ idea next?

          Please.

  2. ivz (@ivz) said on 11th March 2013, 12:37

    If the FIA put as much effort into the aero regulations as Pirelli did with these tyres, there would be no need for such tyres in the first place to improve ‘the show’.

    • Chris (@tophercheese21) said on 11th March 2013, 12:51

      I’d rather these tires than DRS

      • Chris (@tophercheese21) said on 11th March 2013, 12:56

        *tyres*
        Stupid auto-correct.

      • ivz (@ivz) said on 11th March 2013, 21:23

        I don’t think you are getting the point here. When has anyone said that DRS is the best solution to help the cars pass on track?
        The FIA are quite simply rubbishing motor racing because they are not competent enough to make a set of rules that will seriously cut downforce, and make it extremely difficult for teams to get it back. Huge wide tyres with limited downforce and high horsepower will provide cars that can pass each other when they are in another cars wake. Sure, they thought low and wide front wings together with a skinny and high back wing would help improve the whole turbulent air situation, but it really hasn’t, so they need to move onto the next thing, not DRS. I don’t understand how difficult it is for the FIA to limit the amount of elements on the wings? Make the rules in such a way that the wings are so simple they hardly produce any downforce, and make the tyre rules so that they are a few inches wider.
        In an ideal world, the FIA would have a special ‘portable wind tunnel’ where by they would strap the car in, run a certain wind speed, and measure the weight of down force it produces. The rules could be set at say downforce equal to the cars weight, so teams could make a heavier car if they wanted more downforce, but that would just simply make them slower so they wouldn’t. Then teams would simply design the most efficient cars to make the downforce required. But I guess this ‘portable downforce wind tunnel’ is a bit too far fetched :)

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 12th March 2013, 9:36

          It was not FIA that came up with DRS, @ivz, it was an idea from the teams (in FOTA) and the FIA took this proposal of theirs into the rules.

          The reason the FIA has trouble taking wings away is that there are others who would rather not change much as it unsettles the balance and makes the teams investments in Aero devices and experience less valuable. When DRS proved “effective”, it was only a small step to do away with the ambitious changes to the chassis that were planned to go with the new engine originally.

    • Blackmamba (@blackmamba) said on 11th March 2013, 13:06

      I don’t understand why people complain about these tyres. Certainly with 7 different race winners in 7 races last year I would say that was ace. They all have the same tyres so if your team can not optimize them then blame them not the tyre. I certainly would not want to go to the era where the race was effectively over after the first corner.

    • petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 11th March 2013, 14:23

      Very true. It’s not Pirelli’s fault at all – they have been given a brief and they are doing a brilliant job IMO. As they have said several times, they can easilly create a tyre that lasts for 100+ laps if that’s what was wanted.

      It’s a compromise, either you have durable tyres where drivers can push for the whole race or ones that create different strategies and various pitstops. Sadly, if the optimum strategy involves drivers saving their tyres, that’s what they’re going to do.

      • HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 17:03

        But as you say@petebaldwin, “drivers saving their tyres” need not be the optimum strategy,” they can easily create a tyre that lasts 100+laps” and it would be the same challenge for everybody.

        • petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 11th March 2013, 17:43

          @hohum No exactly – my point was that they could create a tyre that lasted 100 laps, but there’d be no variation in strategy and lots of races would be done in the first 5 laps.
          Drivers saving their tyres is the optimum strategy if you have tyres that drop off early.

          • HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 18:36

            @petebaldwin, “lots of raceswould be done in the first 5 laps” why ? because the fastest driver would be faster? I prefer to think that the race would not be won until the chequered flag dropped. Admittedly the era of high downforce has made close racing and passing more difficult but tyres that can’t stand the sliding around that results from close racing only makes the situation worse, if the tyres could stand up to abuse a driver could continue to harry a car in front in the hope of forcing it into a mistake and passing it, now they have to pit for new tyres or drop back and follow all the way to the finish.

          • petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 11th March 2013, 20:39

            Yeah fair enough but if you remember back to how things used to be, we suddenly got that one race in Canada where for whatever reason, the tyres struggled and we got lots of pit stops and everyone loved it! We weren’t all delighted with the long lasting tyres then…

            In all honesty, it’d be nice to see a bit more variation. Perhaps some races where Pirelli deliberately go conservative with the tyres and some where they don’t. If they picked the compounds at the start of the year and allowed for some variety, you’d get some tactical races and some full on tests of pace… Then again, that’s trying to create a “show” again. All depends what you want to see I guess.

          • HoHum (@hohum) said on 12th March 2013, 3:13

            @petebaldwin, If you really want to have tyres as a talking and strategic consideration then I suggest the model of Moto GP where they have to choose between the softs and hards, both choices have to last the race distance but the softs usually lose grip towards the end, loseing the advantage they gained early on, but not always.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 11th March 2013, 19:10

      @ivz But aero is much harder to control as the teams all have their own chassis! Plus, we still get odd aero quirks here and there which is how it should be, rather than a free for all, in my opinion.

    • Mike (@mike) said on 12th March 2013, 3:08

      @ivz

      Ok then, explain how they can “fix” the aero rules.

      • HoHum (@hohum) said on 12th March 2013, 3:16

        @mike, drastically reduce the surface area of the wings.

        • Robbie (@robbie) said on 12th March 2013, 19:54

          Agree entirely. Mandate their shape and form and surface area and angle.

          @bascb “The reason the FIA has trouble taking wings away is that there are others who would rather not change much as it unsettles the balance and makes the teams investments in Aero devices and experience less valuable.”

          And yet, imho, the tires are making a mockery of that anyway. Do all the wind tunnel work you want…the tires will be your undoing anyway, as they change depending on the track, and the temp. and vary from one track to the next. Spend your whole season chasing tire setups after spending millions upon millions in the off-season fine tuning the car only to put sponges under it.

  3. John H (@john-h) said on 11th March 2013, 13:07

    I think a high degradation which is arguably good for the show – actually, inarguably good for the show

    *sigh*

    Depends what kind of ‘show’ you’re putting on Martin.

    • Anonymouse said on 11th March 2013, 13:27

      The Excuse show?

    • Armchair Expert (@armchairexpert) said on 11th March 2013, 21:38

      The show in which driver on old tyres is breezed past in the middle of a straight by a driver on fresh tyres because of DRS. What a spectactle it is…

      Unfortunately 2010 was the last season when F1 was still a sport. Since 2011 everyone in F1 paddock is obsessed with words “show and entertainment”. Tyres which effectively banned driving close to the limit of car/driver combination and which requires driving to delta time and DRS which allows even bad drivers to overtake without any effort, while only 3 years ago you had to have skills in order to do that. And despite all these meaningless passings and action and despite cost cutting measurements, more than 50% of teams are in bad financial shape, there is dramatic rise in hiring pay drivers and TV rating are not improving. Spirit of F1 (skill and speed) is slowly being killed and I see no point of return to what it was – real sport of men. It’s a shame, but it’s all becoming as fake as American wrestling, so I don’t even care anymore.

  4. Blackmamba (@blackmamba) said on 11th March 2013, 13:10

    Ferrari seem to know something about the tyres that everybody else don’t. They were predicting that other teams are going to be surprised and/or shocked about the inability to extract the performance from the tyres.

  5. Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 11th March 2013, 13:14

    I see many people who are getting happy about the fact that the tyres, basically, don’t last. In my opinion, this is all a direct or indirect result of there being only one tyre supplier. Bridgestone, Michelin, if they were still there, competition would have been better. Now there only being Pirelli – they are basically controlling the sport, to some extent.

    • @shreyasf1fan – I have to disagree with you there: the teams themselves requested higher degredation to “spice up the show”. Whether you like it or not is another matter, but they are just making the tyres to a specification, so that’s the element that isn’t to your tastes I gather.

      I’m not a fan of tyre wars: a single supplier gives a level playing field and prevents needless development races with things that aren’t even influenced by the teams. I get much more excited about a new aerodynamic development than I do a new compound structure, because it’s the team themselves that are responsible for the former (and besides, usually they are more interesting).

      • Robbie (@robbie) said on 12th March 2013, 21:10

        Hmmm…I’m not sure that the teams requested these tires. Sure they may have voted a certain way in agreement to one among some options in terms of the direction F1 should take of late, but I’m not convinced they eagerly elected tires that will have them scratching their heads for at least the first half of the season, and cause drivers to lament not being able to push the cars to the limits.

        I’m also not sure you can seperate an ‘aero develpment’ from a ‘new compound structure’ in that, if it is things that the teams influence that excite you more, then you should be excited to see who can work their own magic the best as to get a handle on the tires the most quickly, if it is at all possible. Personally I am more excited by seeing close driver to driver racing on a relatively equal footing than to see driver as passenger risking killing his tires in passing another driver as passenger who is simply on awful tires (which I fear they will all be too much of the time).

      • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 13th March 2013, 3:34

        The team sure didn’t choose these tires. During Jerez, everyone was surprised about the levels of tire degredation – the drivers as well as the teams.

  6. HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 13:18

    Monty Python episode 10,759;
    MW, I would like to return this EXCUSE
    PH, Why, whats wrong with it ?
    MW, Nothing, I bought 20 Excuses but 1 race got cancelled so we only need 19.
    PH, Well it’s not our fault and we don’t even know whether we will be able to sell it next year.

  7. HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 13:25

    ” It’s an interesting challenge and at the end of the day it’s the same for everyone”
    You could say the same about racing cars without “wings”.
    And it would inarguably improve the “show”

  8. Emma_LN said on 11th March 2013, 14:02

    Maybe alone but im starting to get extremely fed up with just how big an impact in tyres have & just how much focus is now been put onto the tyres.
    All you hear now is tyres, Before a race weekend the discussion is on the tyres, throughout practice all you hear about is tyres, In qualifying you hear constant talk of tyres & then its the same in the race.

    watching 2 drivers on different compounds or on fresh vs. worn tyres, theres no fun in it anymore, the driver on fresh tyres just zips straght past with the car on the worn tyres not really able to put up much of a fight.

    The tyres may help the ‘show’ in some situations but im starting to feel that there taking a lot away from the ‘racing’ & at the end of the day I prefer watching a ‘race’ to a ‘show’.

    • Roald (@roald) said on 11th March 2013, 14:23

      It was basically the same in the refueling years, emptier cars would easily overtake the heavier ones.

      • HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 14:48

        @roald, yes, re-fuelling was another gimmick to “improve the show” that only served to reduce racing to a series of simultaneous time trials.

        • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 11th March 2013, 17:00

          @emma_LN : You do understand that tyres are an extremely important part of not just F1, but any form of motor-racing? Obviously, tyre wear-out has been the issue this season, so there’s a lot of discussion going on them.

          • HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 17:05

            Tyre wear out is an artificial issue, that’s why many fans are sick of it.

          • Emma_LN said on 11th March 2013, 19:05

            You do understand that tyres are an extremely important part of not just F1, but any form of motor-racing?

            Yes, However how often do you hear tyres mentioned in other categories?

            In other categories tyres are an important factor, However there never the most important factor & they were not discussed continually before, during & after the race weekend like the Pirelli’s are in F1 now.

            Also in other categories (And Pre-Pirelli F1) you never have situations where a car on older tyres or a harder compound is at as big a disadvantage as you get with the Pirelli’s in F1. The degredation is so high on these Pirelli’s much of the time that you don’t get any decent racing between cars on tyres at different stages of wear, The one on the fresh tyres blast’s straght past without any decent racing battle.

            Also look at other categories (& Pre-Pirelli F1), You never have situations where drivers are having to drive well under the limit because of how fragile the tyres are.

          • BasCB (@bascb) said on 12th March 2013, 9:42

            This just is not true @emma_LN

            Also in other categories (And Pre-Pirelli F1) you never have situations where a car on older tyres or a harder compound is at as big a disadvantage as you get with the Pirelli’s in F1.

            Being on older tyres has been a disadvantage for much of the motorsport history (in F1 not when the tyres were just too good to even degrade durin a race in the latter Bridgestone years). It was one of the things that led Michelin to the innovative idea of being able to change just the tyres instead of the whole wheel (to shorten a stop and get a competative advantage)!
            I am not saying that I want F1 to

    • Hahaha, I can actually relate all too well with what Emma has to say there. Well said, it was funny. I have to agree with @hohum again here and say that it is indeed an artificial issue and you and I could have been easily spared all these rubber related torture.

    • Kimi4WDC said on 11th March 2013, 22:51

      They should just shut up and drive. They using tyres as an excuse for whatever they like. Tyres always were one of most important. They were specifically cooked to deliver insane advantages. Rich teams all were on better tyres so maybe they didn’t have decency to complain back then.

      Now when all of the teams in a same boat, they whine.

  9. Jack Lenox (@jacklenox) said on 11th March 2013, 14:11

    Haven’t tyres always been a massive factor in F1? At least Pirelli haven’t done a Michelin and brought us a race with just three teams competing!

      • Jack Lenox (@jacklenox) said on 11th March 2013, 14:56

        Ok, when were tyres not a massive factor?

        • HoHum (@hohum) said on 11th March 2013, 17:10

          All those years when there was a single supplier whose tyres lasted all race long and other years when tyres from different suppliers performed similarly and lasted all race long. The problem with the “tyre war” years was that teams had exclusive contracts rather than the tyre manufacturers trying to give every car the best tyres.

          • Jack Lenox (@jacklenox) said on 11th March 2013, 21:37

            Really? I think to summarise the entire period of single tyre manufacturers as an era in which the tyres “lasted all race long” is a fairly sweeping and inaccurate generalisation.

            As far back as 1908 Christian Lauteschalnger shredded 10 tyres on his way to victory in his Mercedes at the French GP. Unless you look to the 50s-60s when a set of tyres could last for more than one race, in the last 20-30 years or so I can’t think of a season where the norm was for drivers not to change tyres at least once during a race. And anyway, what’s good tyres that hardly degrade? Pit stops and pit strategy add a lot of excitement to a race.

            2012 was surely one of the best seasons in recent history and the tyres played a significant role. 2013 is again looking very exciting, what’s the problem?

          • HoHum (@hohum) said on 12th March 2013, 3:34

            I purposely DID NOT state that tyres lasted all race long during ALL the years of a single tyre supplier, and my opinion of pit stops is the opposite of yours, our opposite opinions are, and can only be, opinions.
            My early years of following F1 were free of tyre changes (weather permiting), to me tyre changes and re-fuelling spoiled the flow of the race and races lost in the pits were enraging, you probably had the opposite experience to me and therefore hold opposite views.

          • BasCB (@bascb) said on 12th March 2013, 9:45

            The problem with the “tyre war” years was that teams had exclusive contracts rather than the tyre manufacturers trying to give every car the best tyres.

            Actually @hohum, that is only part of the problem with the tyre war (although it did a lot to make the sport less enjoyable during those years).

            The other problem was that the tyres were just so grippy, that the cornering speeds were getting out of hand. So that meant things like the groovy tyres, etc. to cut contact patch. And off course the cost of development would also be a bit of a concern.

  10. KronicSonic (@kronicsonic) said on 11th March 2013, 15:11

    Wasn’t Button saying not long ago that they have a much better understanding of this years tyres compared to last year, and now Martin is saying the tyres are going to be causing teams trouble? Surely if they’re better understood, even if it means more pit stops, it means less trouble working out what to do during a race?

  11. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 11th March 2013, 15:55

    It’s like Kimi said early last season : the fastest and best driver on the day still wins.

    If we can have some unpredictable races while we’re at it, why complain?

    • Jack Lenox (@jacklenox) said on 11th March 2013, 16:21

      Hear hear.

    • Armchair Expert (@armchairexpert) said on 11th March 2013, 21:50

      You want unpredictable and exciting racing? Throw away all these expensive cars, replace them with Dallaras GP2/08 with 2014 power units, wider tyres and more ground effect and allow absolutely no modifications other than changing set-up and working on power units efficiency. Voila, the best drivers in the world in cars delivering spectacular racing and all this for fractions of costs now.

  12. OOliver said on 11th March 2013, 16:04

    I guess Withmarsh loves his “spectacles”. I thought by now he’d be telling us how he expects his team to win both championships.

  13. China said on 11th March 2013, 16:27

    What a contemptible human being that is Martin Whitmarsh. I’m glad I chose to subscribe to V8 Supercars for 2013, great racing generally look at 2012 Perth race 3 final laps, Newzealand Hamilton race 2, better racing than the supposed pinnacle that is F1, thanks Martin but no thanks. How does F1 as a category still survive baffles my mind, it has to be the call of duty equivalent of motor racing.

    • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 11th March 2013, 16:57

      We have a Battlefield fan here, don’t we?

      • China said on 11th March 2013, 18:04

        Not really mate, not a big fan of either game if I’m honest. If you think that due to my avatar? that was setup 12 months ago on battlelog, it uses a service called Gravatar and F1 Fanatic uses the same system to so it automatically links that avatar here.

        Ironically though, issues that stopped me playing BF3 are similar to why I’m not as interested in F1 as I used to be. The fan base kept complaining certain things were too powerful be it guns in BF3 or tyres in F1 they needed to be nerfed they cried!

        They dumbed the game down so much that in the end the classes lost their roles and lost was the balance of the game, alienating the die-hards who liked strategy, and tactics replaced with mindless run and gun for maximum instant gratification similar to DRS and KERS.

        The game was runined by the fan base and devs/fia changing things on a whim without objective reasoning or logic. Not to say you can’t enjoy it but it’s a far cry from what it once was be it video games or motor racing.

  14. Jason (@jason12) said on 11th March 2013, 20:29

    Where is the fun in a driver whose tires have miraculously switched on, winning the race?
    The team cannot replicate that performance because they themselves aren’t exactly sure how it happened…
    And this is supposed to be F1 RACING?

  15. Shimks (@shimks) said on 11th March 2013, 20:30

    As an aside comment, I much prefer the one-tyre supplier format. It allows the tyre manufacturer to play around, creating challenges for all teams and a greater spectacle without the creation of a large gap between those teams who picked the right supplier, like we saw, for example, with Michelin/Bridgestone in 2005.

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