Yas Marina,


With the world championship drawing to a close last Sunday, there was just one more day of testing to be completed at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi, with all 10 teams running two cars each.

The programme was split into two parts, with one car reserved for young drivers to gain Formula 1 experience, while the regular race drivers ran the other car in a tyre test. As next year’s compounds will be identical to this year’s, the second part of the test was mainly an opportunity to optimise the car-tyre package. All the information gained, thanks also to extra sensors fitted compared to a usual race weekend, will be shared with Pirelli.

A total of 11 young drivers took to the track, with Williams being the only team to run two of them. Italo-Argentinean driver Franco Colapinto, fourth in Formula 3 this year, drove in the morning before handing the car over to Britain’s Zak O’Sullivan. Many of the young drivers in action today also took part in last Friday’s FP1 – such as Robert Shwartzman for Ferrari, Frederik Vesti for Mercedes, newly-crowned Formula 2 champion Theo Pourchaire with Alfa Romeo, Felipe Drugovich for Aston Martin, Jack Doohan with Alpine, and Pato O’Ward for McLaren – as well as O’Sullivan.

Among the regular drivers on track were George Russell (Mercedes), Sergio Perez (Red Bull), Oscar Piastri (McLaren), Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll (Aston Martin), Esteban Ocon (Alpine), Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz (Ferrari), Yuki Tsunoda and Daniel Ricciardo (AlphaTauri), Guanyu Zhou (Alfa Romeo), as well as Alex Albon and Logan Sargeant (Williams). Haas didn’t run either of its 2023 race drivers but instead opted for reserve driver Pietro Fittipaldi (who can’t be classified as a rookie as he has already driven two grands prix, on both occasions for Haas).

The overall fastest time of 1’24’’393 was set by Esteban Ocon while Pato O’Ward was fastest of the young drivers thanks to a time of 1’24’’662. Temperatures remained high, with asphalt between 25 and 44 degrees centigrade, and ambient temperatures that ranged from 24 to 34 degrees.

The regular drivers each had 10 tyre sets available (one set of C1 and C2, three sets of C3 and C4, plus one set of C5) while the young drivers had eight sets each (two sets of C3, four sets of C4, and two sets of C5).

A total of 2184 laps were covered: 125 on C1 (6%), 138 on C2 (6%), 718 on C3 (33%), 942 on C4 (43%), and 261 on C5 (12%). That’s compared to the 2681 laps that were covered during last weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, equivalent to 14158 kilometres.

Pirelli’s on-track season isn’t quite finished in Abu Dhabi: next weekend there will be a test at Magny-Cours in France with Mercedes to focus on development of wet-weather tyres.


Founded in 1872, Pirelli is a company with deep Italian roots now recognised all over the world for its cutting-edge technology, capacity for innovation, and the quality of its products. Motorsport has always played an important part in Pirelli’s strategy, following the ‘race to road’ philosophy. The company has been engaged in motorsport for 116 years and today supplies tyres to more than 350 championships on both two and four wheels. Pirelli pays constant attention to the most efficient use of natural resources and energy, aiming to reach carbon neutrality by 2030.
Pirelli has been Global Tyre Partner of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship since 2011. The company also supplies championships including FIA Formula 2, FIA Formula 3, Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine, FIA World Rally Championship and GT World Challenge, alongside numerous national series.