Paul Hembery in Hungary said he hopes the world of F1 can “finally get back to talking about racing, the drivers and the cars”.
Indeed, the word ‘tyre’ has utterly dominated the 2013 season, as the grid grappled with excessive wear, the ‘test-gate’ scandal, and the fallout of the chaotic British grand prix. But Pirelli boss Hembery’s wish has not come true.
Just after putting his Mercedes on pole in Hungary, Lewis Hamilton admitted he is not really looking forward to the grand prix. “I honestly feel the car is just as competitive in terms of downforce and mechanics compared to the Red Bull,” said the Briton. “It’s the tyres. When we bolt those things on they just don’t work for us.”
Not only that, teams are once again getting used to yet another specification change, as Pirelli hopes to solve all the problems by combining the 2013 compounds with last year’s kevlar construction. Hembery insists the change has not changed the pecking order, but in Hungary Force India’s Paul di Resta was baffled after qualifying 18th.
And his teammate Adrian Sutil told SID news agency: “The new tyres are for the top teams, no matter what they say. “The track is 50 degrees and yet we can’t warm them up. It’s a clear advantage for the cars with more downforce. “In the end they (the top teams) got what they wanted.” The German also hinted that he does not believe the new tyres feature the 2013 compounds, revealing “It feels as though they have changed completely”.
Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen also pointed at the new tyres as he struggled to keep up this weekend with teammate Romain Grosjean.
According to Hembery, however, it’s up to each team to make the best of the same tyres offered at each race. He told Bild am Sonntag newspaper: “Here in Hungary, Mercedes’ rear tyres are up to 20 degrees hotter than some of the other teams. “If they solve the problem, they will be right at the very front.” Hamilton’s teammate Nico Rosberg agreed: “The tyres are indeed the same for everyone. “We’re not talking about a lottery, but a matter of simple physics that we need to understand.” And every other team will also have to get used to Pirelli, as the Italian company is inching ever closer to having its F1 contract renewed. “We are already doing serious work on the tyres for 2014,”
Hembery is quoted by Russia’s f1news.ru, “and the advertising contracts have already been signed. “The lawyers are working on the final version of the (F1 tyre supply) contract,” he revealed.
Info: GMM, Image: Force India