2014 Spanish Grand Prix – Practice Sessions
TYRE WEAR AND DEGRADATION IN LINE WITH EXPECTATIONS ON ONE OF THE TOUGHEST CIRCUITS OF THE YEAR
PERFORMANCE GAPS BETWEEN THE TWO NOMINATED COMPOUNDS VARY FROM 1.0 TO 1.2 SECONDS
PIRELLI BRINGS MORE TYRES TO A GRAND PRIX THAN EVER
Barcelona, May 9, 2014 – Pirelli’s P Zero Orange hard and P Zero White medium compounds have performed exactly as expected on one of the most demanding circuits of the year, which puts a huge amount of energy through the tyres. Track temperatures in FP2 during the afternoon were practically double those seen for FP1 in the morning, but wear and degradation is in line with expectations, even though several teams have brought aerodynamic upgrades that increase demands on the tyres.
Free practice followed a conventional pattern, with drivers using only the hard tyre in the morning before moving onto the medium tyre from halfway through the second session, as part of the usual race and qualifying simulations on different fuel loads.
This weekend, Pirelli brings more tyres to a grand prix than has ever been seen before. As Barcelona is the opening round of GP3 as well as the second round of GP2, the Italian firm has brought a total of 3224 tyres to be used in Spain, as well as some spares. This is made up of 1848 for F1 (22 cars), 728 for GP2 (26 cars) and 648 for GP3 (27 cars). This is mainly due to an increase in tyre allocations for F1 this year.
By way of comparison, the highest number of tyres that Pirelli brought to Spain in 2011 – the company’s first year in Formula One – was 3056, despite the fact that there were two more F1 cars on the grid at the time. With Pirelli’s motorhome also making its first appearance of 2014, a total of 14 Pirelli trucks have made the journey to Barcelona.
Paul Hembery: “The tyres have a lot of work to do in Barcelona, particularly the front-left, but despite this wear and degradation is in line with our expectations, which means that we should see most drivers do a maximum of three stops tomorrow. With no pre-season testing in Barcelona this year, the teams used today to adapt their 2014 cars to the high-energy characteristics of the track, and we expect lap times to fall further as more rubber is laid down. There is normally a high degree of track evolution here, helped by the large number of support races, which will have an effect on tyre wear over the rest of the weekend. On that subject, the fact we’re bringing the most number of tyres that we’ve ever transported to a grand prix – 3224 – underlines our commitment to the sport and providing the best possible spectacle for the fans, by encouraging competitors to run as much as possible.”
1 HAM – Mercedes 01:27.023 Hard – Used
2 BUT – McLaren 01:27.891 Hard – Used
3 RIC – Red Bull 01:27.973 Hard – New
1 HAM – Mercedes 01:25.524 Medium – New
2 ROS – Mercedes 01:25.973 Medium – New
3 RIC – Red Bull 01:26.509 Medium – New
Tyre statistics of the day:
Hard Medium Intermediate Wet
kms driven * 1722 3490 0 0
sets used overall ** 21 64 0 0
highest number of laps ** 28 29 0 0
* The above number gives the total amount of kilometres driven in FP1 and FP2 today, all drivers combined.
** Per compound, all drivers combined.
Pirelli fact of the day:
Fuel loads have a big effect on lap times in Barcelona, which explains some notable variations in free practice. As a rough guide, every 10 kilograms of fuel burned in Barcelona represents a gain of three and a half tenths of a second per lap.