2023 TYRE COMPOUND CHOICES – AZERBAIJAN, USA AND ITALY
Compounds revealed for Baku, Miami and Imola
For the upcoming grands prix in Azerbaijan (April 28-30) and Miami (5-7 May), Pirelli has nominated the same three compounds used for these races last year. At Imola (19-21 May) the nominations will be softer then those made for 2022.
On the Baku street circuit, the teams will have at their disposal the C3 as P Zero White hard, C4 as P Zero Yellow medium and C5 as P Zero Red soft. This is the softest trio of compounds in Pirelli’s range, which are well suited to the tight corners on this city circuit as well as the long straights where the cars reach a maximum speed of 340kph. The most common strategy for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix is a one-stopper, although some teams stopped twice last year to take advantage of a virtual safety car before the chequered flag. The race was held at the beginning of June in 2022, with thermal degradation becoming a factor due to the high asphalt temperature.
For Miami, Pirelli has nominated three compounds in the middle of the range, with C2 as P Zero White hard, C3 as P Zero Yellow medium and C4 as P Zero Red soft. The focus is on versatility for this street track run around the Hard Rock Stadium, which takes in 19 corners as well as three long straights. The race can be completed by stopping only once, as a number of drivers demonstrated last year with good management of an opening stint on the medium tyre, even though a two-stopper is quicker on paper. The weather in Florida is a constant variable, with the risk of wind and rain another factor to consider.
For the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, softer tyres have been chosen due to the low severity of the circuit and the contained wear seen on the tyres last year. The C3 is the P Zero White hard, C4 is P Zero Yellow medium and C5 is P Zero Red soft. A new qualifying format will also be run at Imola, with just one compound used in each session. In Q1 only the hard will be available, Q2 will use only the medium, while the soft is just for Q3. This “Alternative Tyre Allocation”, which will also be used at another race weekend this year after Imola, reduces the total tyre allocation for each car from 13 sets to 11 per weekend. The new Cinturato Blue Full Wet, the first Pirelli rain tyres that don’t need tyre blankets, will also make their debut at the opening Italian race of the year.