Multiple factors caused Silverstone punctures – Pirelli

2013 British Grand Prix

Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Silverstone, 2013Pirelli say a combination of different factors caused a series of high-speed tyre blowouts during the British Grand Prix.

F1’s official tyre supplier said the failures were caused by teams using tyre pressures that were too low, swapping the tyres between the left and right sides of the car and using severe camber angles.

They added the severity of the kerbs at some high-speed corners such as turn four also precipitated the failures.

Pirelli admitted it had not previously discouraged teams from swapping the tyres across the car. It has asked the FIA to prevent teams from continuing the practice as well as setting limits for tyre pressure and camber.

“Under-inflation of the tyres and extreme camber settings, over which Pirelli has no control, are choices that can be dangerous under certain circumstances,” the company added in a statement.

“Because of this, Pirelli has asked the FIA for these parameters will be a topic of accurate and future examinations. Pirelli has also asked for compliance with these rules to be checked by a dedicated delegate.”

Aggressive camber angles were also blamed for tyre blistering at the Belgian Grand Prix in 2011, the first year of Pirelli’s current tenure in the sport. From the following race they stipulated a maximum camber limit teams had to adhere to.

Pirelli denied the punctures seen at Silverstone were related to the tyre delaminations which occurred earlier in the season.

In order to prevent a repeat of the Silverstone failures Pirelli says it needs access to “real-time data from the teams regarding fundamental parameters such as pressure, temperature and camber angles” in future.

The company asserted that “the 2013 tyre range does not compromise driver safety in any way if used in the correct manner, and that it meets all the safety standards requested by the FIA”.

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49 comments on Multiple factors caused Silverstone punctures – Pirelli

  1. obviously said on 2nd July 2013, 22:14

    Swapping tires purpose because there was a performance advantage when doing so, low pressure and aggressive camber are also pure performance issues, so people should look at teams, before blaming Pirelli.

    Everything the teams did, they did on their own and in pursuit of performance. They have clearly overstepped the line, but all those failures were simply the result of pushing the performance envelop too far, just like with engines, weight reduction in parts that turn out too weak and similar.

    It would be interesting if Pirelli had all the realtime data for all the failures this year. I can bet that all of them happened on the cars that were running outside of safe perimeters.

    But I do not have a problem with that. Teams always push their cars and sometimes cars fail, but that is all part of F1 and it has always been. Good F1 cars are usually fast, but fragile.

    Remember how Red Bull kept suffering engine failures while they were perfecting the cold blowing for their engine blown diffuser?

    Situation with the tires this year is the same, but F1 world is so lost at the moment that it can’t even tie it’s own shoes and is going for a nuclear option because they are in such a chaos that overreaction is taking over in every situation.

  2. TRF101 said on 3rd July 2013, 5:33

    As if the teams have not done all those things in the past. Pirelli has manufactured substandard tyres. Admit it.

  3. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd July 2013, 8:11

    I think far too many people are being far too quick to judge Pirelli, and they’re doing it on the basis of the complaints from earlier in the year. Nobody here has access to any of the data that Pirelli and the teams do, so I’m bemused that so many people are claiming that this is all Pirelli’s fault, even after Pirelli went out of their way to improve tyre safety and were rejected by the teams, changed their tyre allocations to address the teams’ complaints, and altered the bonding agents to prevent delaminations.

    It’s been said before: Pirelli have done everything that was asked of then by the teams and the FIA, and people are still looking to crucify them.

  4. Tariq Patel (@mdtariqp) said on 3rd July 2013, 10:31

    If Pirelli knew beforehand that the parameters mentioned by it could cause such issues, should they not have asked the FIA to strictly enforce them at every race.

    • obviously said on 3rd July 2013, 13:09

      Teams have every right to push their own car to the limit (and beyond). Like if they’d tell them that they should tune down their engine because it might fail – that’s completely up to the team. The problem is, teams were keeping silent when tire failures were occurring because they didn’t want to unveil their little secrets by revealing what caused the failures. So all the blame was being shifted directly onto Pirelli by an uniformed and jumping-into-conclusions “experts”, who were further feeding the “fans”.

      I personally can’t see why are they even changing the tires. Have them run a 3 or 4 days test at Silverstone with pressures and cambers within perimeters and with no tire swapping. If not tire failis, then FIA can tell the teams to do whatever the hell they want for the rest of the season and if any tire fails while being outside of prescribed perimeters and/or swapped sides, it’s team’s responsibility, not Pirellis.

      It’s just so absurd that they are changing the tires, when it’s actually the teams who should change what they are doing.

  5. EDS said on 3rd July 2013, 17:22

    “Pirelli has stated that there were no defects in the tires. The problem arose from actually putting them on CARS. Pirelli never specifically told the teams not to put them on cars but are now going to recommend that.”

    -imaginary quote from my wife, whom I love very much.

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