Pirelli is gearing up for its home race, as Formula One heads to the Temple of Speed at Monza for the Italian Grand Prix this weekend.
The tyre manufacturer is taking the two hardest tyres in its F1 range to the circuit, which is located just half an hour’s drive from its global headquarters in Milan, where this year’s racing tyres are designed.
The long straights, fast corners and high kerbs are characteristics of the circuit which place heavy demands on the tyres, while reduced downforce levels lead to the highest top speeds of the year.
Pirelli is therefore taking the two hardest tyres in the range, P Zero Orange hard and P Zero White medium, to Monza.
Paul Hembery, director of motorsport for Pirelli tyres, commented: “Racing at home is always a source of immense pleasure and pride for us, particularly because many of our employees who don’t normally travel to races get to see our tyres in action for the only time all season.
“Our home race also happens to be one of the most demanding races of the year for the tyres, due to the rapid layout of the circuit: the reason why Monza is known as ‘the temple of speed’.
“The faster a circuit is, generally the more stressful it is for the tyres because of the heat build-up that all these forces entail.
“The cars run a very low downforce set-up for Monza to maximise their top speed on the straights. This has a distinct effect on the tyres, as less downforce means that the cars tend to slide more and run a greater risk of wheels locking up in the braking areas, which are a key element of Monza. These lock-ups can lead to flat spots, although the design of our tyre structure and compounds this year means that flat spots are a much less common occurrence than they used to be.”
Denna Bowman, Head Office