2022 Italian Grand Prix - Friday
WHAT WE LEARNED
- The three tyres in the middle of Pirelli’s range performed exactly as expected during the free practice sessions at Monza: the first opportunity for the teams to sample the 18-inch tyres and new cars at the ‘temple of speed’, which is celebrating its 100th birthday this year.
- The performance gaps between the compounds are currently at around 0.6 seconds per lap between P Zero White hard and P Zero Yellow medium, and 0.4 seconds between medium and P Zero Red soft. Track evolution so far has been quite high, also due to some rain earlier in the day.
- Once the track dried, the weather was warm and dry for both free practice sessions, peaking at 38 degrees of track temperature and 28 degrees ambient in FP1. The FP2 session, starting at 5pm, was slightly cooler and therefore less representative of qualifying and the race. The weather is expected to be warm and dry for the rest of the weekend.
- The tyres also performed well on the new asphalt at Variante del Rettifilo (T1-2), Variante della Roggia (T4-5) and Variante Ascari (T8-10).
- Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc went quickest in FP1, using the soft tyre, while it was the turn of his team mate Carlos Sainz to top the times in FP2, again with the soft.
“The performance of all three compounds followed our expectations today, with a high degree of track evolution that was also down to a green track after the earlier rain. This evolution is likely to continue, which means that the car balance will probably shift and that is likely to be the biggest challenge for the teams this weekend, along with understanding the degradation on all three compounds. The performance gaps between the compounds are quite low as expected, because with so many straights and comparatively few corners, the cornering performance and grip of the compounds is less of a factor: instead it is all about straight-line speed, which has always been a fascinating aspect of Monza. Once more, we have seen in free practice that all three compounds seem set to be valid options for the race on Sunday.”
THE BIG NUMBER: 1872
1872 – specifically January 28 – was when Giovanni Battista Pirelli initially established a company to produce elastic rubber items, exactly 150 years ago in Milan, opening his first plant (which was also the first in Italy) a year later. The tyres that Pirelli made initially were actually for bicycles, before the first car tyres were produced in 1901.