Raikkonen doesn’t understand tyre complaints

2013 Bahrain Grand Prix

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Shanghai, 2013Kimi Raikkonen doesn’t agree with the criticism of the current generation of F1 tyres.

The 2013 tyre range produced by Pirelli has drawn fire from some teams and drivers for forcing them to back off during races.

But Raikkonen says it isn’t a problem. “I think you can push on these tyres, but it?s never perfect,” he said. “You cannot always push 100%.”

“I think they are very good in qualifying and have good grip, so it?s up to you and you have to look after them a bit more in the race.”

“It?s not really any different from last year ?ǣ at least for us anyway ?ǣ so I don?t really understand why people are complaining.”

Team principal Eric Boullier said Formula One had been supplied with the tyres it asked for: “As a sport we asked our tyre supplier, Pirelli, to provide us with tyres which encourage different strategies and adapting to this is part of the competition.”

“We?ve seen some great racing so far this year and Pirelli can take some of the credit for this. We are all allocated the same tyres so it?s up to us as teams and the drivers in the cars to make the most of them.”

Pirelli will supply a more conservative tyre range for this weekend’s race than they originally planned, swapping the soft tyre for the medium compound.

2013 Bahrain Grand Prix

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118 comments on Raikkonen doesn’t understand tyre complaints

  1. raja said on 17th April 2013, 10:20

    Kimi the phenom,, love to see him clinch 2013 dwc… From sauber, mclaren, ferrari and now lotus, nothing have changed, always a pure racer and number one driver..
    Full respect

  2. Kimi spoke briefly and clearly. Excellent!. The teams are unhappy with the tires, like children. It is a sport, guys. All in the same conditions and who better to understand the tendency of the tire wear (like Kimi), it will affect the amount of successful races.

  3. avl0 said on 17th April 2013, 14:49

    Of course kimi doesnt have a problem with the tyres, they’re playing to his advantage, defending them is just as natural as it is for the mercs and redbulls to complain about them. People swayed by either of those arguments alone is being led by one or another teams agenda.

    What you should consider as fans of f1 is what is what provides the best racing. Here opinions are going to differ, however, i feel that the effect the pirelli tyres are having is very negative. Whilst it’s technically true that we saw lots of passing at the previous race in reality we did not. Drivers do not race each other for position anymore, rather they simply drive past whilst the slower guy lets them through without a fight because of how it impacts their overall race because fighting leads to precipitous tyre deg and screwing over strategy. This essentially makes f1 farcical, you may as well hold the race rally style and set the cars off in minute intervals and just record the elapsed time for all the difference it would make to the outcome.

    With the removal of refuelling i agree that something needs to be in place to add complexity in strategy to the race and before trying it tyres that degrade quickly and need replacing often seem like a good way to do that. But it hasnt worked, it has given the added complexity but not kept the racing. This is because the tyres can be ‘protected’ by driving within the limits of the car and made to last longer which makes the cars faster over a race distance but slower per lap than going all out. As far as i understand this is because the pirellis degradation is dependant on physically using up all of the rubber, as evidenced by the discarded rubber off the racing line (which ruins the racing itself) whereas what is required is a tyre that becomes slower at a set rate regardless of how much it it ‘leant on’ which is what we had in the bridgestones. Now the old bridgestones were too robust for this and you’d want a tyre that lost 2 seconds from new after 20 laps rather than the 0.5-1seconds slower from new that they were. But in this way you’d encourage multiple pitstops, have some cars being better on some tyres than others but also allow the drivers to actually race and extract the maximum from the cars because barring flatspotting them or massively overheating them they cant ruin the tyres. They can also just make at least 2 pitstops per race a manditory rule.

  4. Quasimoto said on 17th April 2013, 15:09

    And naturally Kimi would _never_ deign to engage in head games.

  5. Bobdredds (@bobdredds) said on 18th April 2013, 14:19

    “Author: MB
    Romain is having issues with tyre management. What do you have to say about that?” I couldn’t find your comment MB so I will reply here.

    Romain’s issues are not down to the tyre but they way he sets up the car. It’s just his inexperience showing.

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