2021 Hungarian Grand Prix - Preview
WHY WE’VE CHOSEN THE TYRES
- The first half of the 2021 season concludes in Hungary, before Formula 1’s traditional summer break, with the three compounds in the middle of the range nominated: C2 as the P Zero White hard, C3 as the P Zero Yellow medium, and C4 as the P Zero Red soft. Following the sprint qualifying format pioneered at Silverstone, the usual weekend format and tyre rules return in Hungary.
- The Hungary nomination is exactly the same as it was last year. The circuit doesn’t place particularly heavy demands on tyres, with the compounds in the middle of the range well-suited to the tight and twisty track, especially if the weather is warm.
- In contrast to the sweeping and fast corners of Silverstone, the Hungaroring feels almost like a kart circuit: the track is narrow, old-school, and has a non-stop series of corners that means the tyres are constantly working, with no rest.
- Overtaking is tricky, and this is an important factor when planning the race strategy, as track position is key.
- The high summer temperatures, alongside the fact that the circuit is situated within a natural amphitheatre, means that there’s very little airflow: making the Hungarian Grand Prix hard work for both the cars and the drivers.
- The Hungaroring has seen a number of different strategies in the past: last year the wet and intermediate tyres were run at the start of the race because of rain, but before then in 2019 (with the same C2, C3 and C4 tyre nomination) both one-stop and two-stop strategies were used, with a two-stopper from Lewis Hamilton winning the race in a thrilling finale. The teams have plenty of experience and data on this track, as it’s formed part of the calendar since 1986.
FORMULA 3: WHAT TO EXPECT
Formula 3 uses just one compound per race and in Hungary that’s the P Zero Yellow medium compound, with the medium also being the carry-over tyre (for use during free practice) from the previous race in Austria. This year, with three races per weekend, the Formula 3 drivers get five sets of slick tyres (as well as two sets of wet tyres). The medium tyre has been selected for the same reasons that the tyres in the middle of the Formula 1 range have been chosen for the grand prix: it offers excellent all-round adaptability to the constant cornering demands of the Hungaroring, even in hot weather.
MARIO ISOLA – HEAD OF F1 AND CAR RACING
“Tyre-wise, we’re not expecting any particularly big surprises from the Hungaroring, which has been a constant on the calendar and signals the end of the first half of the season. The defining characteristic of the track are all the tight corners in quick succession, with no long straights to cool down the tyres, and hot weather. This makes the Hungaroring actually more demanding on tyres than it initially seems, so some degree of management is likely to be needed on the soft compound in particular. As a result, the best strategy is not always obvious – with different approaches often yielding a similar overall race time, depending on the individual circumstances. That’s why we’ve often seen some tactically intriguing races at the Hungaroring, keeping the final result in doubt right up to the end and providing an interesting challenge for the engineers.”
|MIN. STARTING PRESSURES (slicks)||EOS CAMBER LIMIT|
|19.0 psi (front) | 18.0 psi (rear)||-3.75° (front) | -2.00 ° (rear)|
OTHER PIRELLI NEWS
- One of Pirelli’s biggest events of year takes place during the same weekend as the Hungarian Grand Prix: the Spa 24 Hours in Belgium, for which Pirelli brings 13,000 tyres (including those for the support races).
- Pirelli’s home round of the European Rally Championship – the Rally di Roma Capitale – took place last weekend, using asphalt stages around Italy’s capital. Giandomenico Basso and Lorenzo Granai were the winners, driving a Skoda Fabia R5 on P Zero RA rally tyres.
- The 2022 18-inch slick tyre test programme continued after the British Grand Prix with Aston Martin, Haas and Red Bull taking to the track. It carries on after Hungary, with Ferrari, McLaren and Mercedes driving on Tuesday and Wednesday after the grand prix.