VERSTAPPEN’S CLEAN SWEEP IN SPIELBERG
MARIO ISOLA - DIRECTOR, PIRELLI MOTORSPORT
“One driver dominated this Grand Prix from start to finish, but there was plenty of excitement in the battles between the nineteen others. From our point of view, everything went well. Our simulations going into this race were confirmed on track, in all the changing conditions we experienced from Friday through to today. We knew the Soft would not be a suitable race tyre, but both Medium and Hard allowed those behind the wheel to push and attack when necessary, showing a sufficient differential in degradation between them, without suffering any excessive overheating. In terms of strategy too, the race went to plan. The VSC on lap 15 did not influence the number of stops, but it did open up alternative choices terms of choosing the window for the first pit stop. The top four finishers went for two Medium stints and one Hard, if we ignore Verstappen’s final stop which is not relevant to this analysis, while those who from Friday had preferred to keep two sets of C3, mainly opted to use both along with a set of Mediums.”
THE RACE FROM A TYRE POINT OF VIEW
Max Verstappen topped every single results sheet from the Austrian Grand Prix weekend, picking up the maximum 34 points in this ninth round of the World Championship. The Dutchman permitted himself the luxury of an unplanned pit stop with just two laps remaining to secure the extra point for the race fastest lap. Today, Sergio Perez made his second appearance of the weekend on the podium, with a fine charge through the field to finish third, after his second place finish yesterday. Scuderia Ferrari drivers also visited the podium twice with Carlos Sainz third in yesterday’s short race and Charles Leclerc taking the runner-up spot this afternoon, to secure his second podium finish of the season. It was also the 800th time that a Ferrari driver has stood on an F1 podium.
The race was run on a dry track and the temperatures were slightly lower than on Friday afternoon with the air at 24 °C and the track at 32 °C. The strategies adopted matched the previous day’s predictions. The Soft (C5) was hardly used at all, with the exception of Verstappen’s final assault on the fastest race lap. The kilometres completed were thus fairly equally divided between the Hard (C3,) 54.55% of the total laps completed and the Medium (C4), 45.3%.
Predictions relating to the number of stops and their windows of operation were also confirmed, with a two-stop proving to the be the quickest strategy, especially for those running two sets of Medium and one of Hard.
The longest stint was 36 laps from Kevin Magnussen on the Hard, while Nyck De Vries did the most (33) on the Medium.
Both races at Spielberg were spectacular with wins for Jack Crawford (Hitech) and Richard Verschoor (Van Amersfort Racing) in the seventh round of the FIA Formula 2 Championship. Crawford’s win came in the rain-affected Sprint race, as he got the better of Victor Martins (ART Grand Prix) while third place went to Isack Hadjar (Hitech) after Clement Novalak (Trident) was disqualified.
Verschoor won the Feature Race and was joined on the podium by Ayumu Iwasa (DAMS) and Frederik Vesti (Prema Racing). Vesti thus consolidates his lead in the championship with 125 points, ahead of Theo Pourchaire (105) and Iwasa (101).
The fifth round of the FIA Formula 3 Championship produced plenty of excitement, especially this morning’s race, partly down to tyre behaviour, which presented an additional challenge to the young drivers in the form of managing degradation. Prema Racing secured a clean sweep of wins, courtesy of Paul Aron in the Sprint Race, followed by Zak O’Sullivan in the Feature event. Brazil’s Caio Collet (Van Amersfoot Racing) made it to the podium in both races, while his fellow countryman Gabriel Bortoleto, second in today’s race, increased his lead in the classification. He is on 111, 36 ahead of Sweden’s Dino Beganovich (Prema Racing) on 75. The 32 points that O’Sullivan picked up today puts him third in the standings on 73, equal with Spain’s Josep Maria Marti.
NEXT UP FOR OUR F1 TYRES
Next weekend, Formula 1 moves to Silverstone, one of the most historic venues on the calendar, having hosted 57 Grands Prix since 1950. The Silverstone track is one of the most demanding for tyres and for the British Grand Prix, from 7 to 9 July, teams will use the C1 compound as P Zero White hard, C2 as P Zero Yellow medium and C3 as P Zero Red soft. Pirelli stays on at the Northamptonshire circuit on Tuesday 11 and Wednesday 12 July for two days of testing slick tyres without the use of heating blankets. Taking part will be Red Bull, Haas and Williams.
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.