By Alex Kapadia
The 2013 Formula One season gets underway in Australia this weekend, with Pirelli supplying the new P Zero White medium and P Zero Red supersoft tyres.
It is the first time this combination has been brought into play by the premium tyres manufacturer for the Albert Park circuit.
This years tyres are generally softer and faster than their predecessors, but two to three pit stops are still expected per car on race day.
Melbourne is a semi-permanent circuit renowned for its low levels of grip, which gradually improve over the course of the weekend as the surface rubbers in.
Paul Hembery, motorsport director the premium tyres manufacturer, said: “After 12 days of pre-season testing we finally get to go racing with our 2013 compounds.
“They were developed over the course of the last season in private testing and they are the most focussed and performance-orientated tyres we have ever made.
“Cold weather conditions during pre-season testing meant that we weren’t able to showcase them to the best of their abilities, but we are expecting a different story in Albert Park, with two to three pit stops per car.
“The start of any new season is always a very exciting time and from what we have observed during pre-season testing the field seems to be closer than ever: quite an achievement when you consider that we had seven different winners from the first seven races last year.
“All the compounds and constructions have changed for 2013, and the drivers should notice a wider working range and a bigger window of peak performance.
“The performance gaps between the compounds are also larger, which means that teams have a greater opportunity to use strategy to their advantage by exploiting the consequent speed differentials.”