Red Bull driver Mark Webber admitted he ended the 2011 Formula One season feeling “completely at home” on the Pirelli tyres.
The Australian racer struggled to get to grips with the tyres at the start of the season and had to work through issues that were holding him back in qualifying. He finished the season with just one win compared to 11 racked up his by team-mate Sebastian Vettel, who secured the World Champion title.
The tyre compounds are set to be tweaked again before the start of the 2012 season, but after getting his first taste of the 2012 Pirellis during some of the Friday practice sessions at the end of the season, Webber said he feels comfortable on the new-style tyres.
Webber said: “The biggest thing [in 2011] was the teams and the drivers ultimately got on top of the tyres.
“It was such a big learning curve for everyone initially and you saw that with the racing as well – the racing softened up towards the end of the year because everyone got their heads round it, although not completely.
“They are a different tyre to what we had and that’s for us to get on with that. Pirelli did a good job to take a lot of the tyres they were looking at for 2012 to the last few races to do some development work. Even when I ran those tyres in Abu Dhabi and Brazil and did bits and bobs on them I felt completely at home on them, so that was encouraging for myself and also for the team.”
Alex Kapadia, Operations Team