Pirelli not concerned by very high tyre wear

Mercedes AMG F1 Team

12 April 2013 by TF1T Staff

Pirelli has rejected claims the soft tyre wasn't the right choice for the Chinese Grand Prix following complaints during second practice.

Lewis Hamilton complained over the radio that the degradation was the worst he'd ever encountered.

"The life of the [soft] tyre, it's the worst I've ever experienced with bits flying off all over the place," he said after the session.

"The soft is hardcore. It doesn't feel like the right tyre for this circuit. I did a couple of laps and the tyres just disintegrated."

His former team-mate Jenson Button who is considered to be tyre friendly, agreed: "The option tyre just transforms the car completely; on one lap there is just so much more grip. So it feels really good for one lap, and then it grains front and rear and you lose one second every lap."

Pirelli's motorsport director Paul Hembery says he isn't concerned despite Button suffering a puncture from the excessive wear.

"If the medium did the same then I'd be concerned, but it doesn't," he said on Friday.

"It's a qualifying tyre. It'll be a bit like Melbourne I guess where the top teams are going to be forced to qualify on the softer tyre because it's such a performance advantage and within the first 10 laps they are going to have to pit.

"Some of the Q2 teams might opt to start on the medium tyre and try and gain some track position whilst the first 10 cars drop in.

"It's looking like some can be looking at a two-stop race and worst case three so pretty much in line with what we are looking for."