Pirelli is taking its soft and supersoft tyres to the Singapore Grand Prix for the final street circuit of the year and one of the most physically demanding races for drivers.
The tyre manufacturer has opted for its two softest compounds in its Formula One range for the race that is run entirely at night, which means that track and temperature evolutions are vary to the normal course of a grand prix weekend.
However, ambient temperatures are still generally high, which along with the enclosed nature of the track in the heart of the city, means that this is one of the most physically demanding tracks of the year for the drivers. The circuit also has more has more corners than any other track on the F1 calendar, creating yet more work for the tyres.
According to Pirelli, traction and braking are the key elements to the Marina Bay street circuit, and there is also a bumpy surface, which makes finding consistent traction all the more difficult. As well as that, there is the usual street furniture including painted white lines and manhole covers that can catch drivers out and provide an extra hazard for the tyres.
Paul Hembery, motorsport director for Pirelli tyres, commented: “It’s always a great pleasure for us to come to Singapore, which has consistently proved itself to be one of the most spectacular races of the year. Racing under the lights in such a vibrant city provides an amazing atmosphere that showcases Formula One at its very best.
“The unique nature of the race at night obviously has an impact on the tyres, and we’ve selected the two softest tyres in the range for their rapid warm-up and high levels of mechanical grip: vital characteristics on a street circuit. This is actually a step softer than last year, when we nominated the medium and supersoft, so we should see some interesting tyre strategies with teams taking full advantage of the performance on offer.
“There’s traditionally quite a high incidence of safety cars, so every strategy has to be flexible enough to bear this eventuality in mind as well. With the championship seemingly getting closer, all the signs suggest that we’re in for an exciting and unpredictable race.”