By Alex Kapadia
Formula One teams are being driven to distraction by two controversies surrounding the tyres supplied by Pirelli.
Firstly, whether the ‘secret’ test conducted by Mercedes between the Spanish and Monaco Grands Prix and secondly, the way the tyres themselves are influencing races and the decision to introduce new tyres for the rear of the cars.
To put both issues into context and give a fascinating insight into the world of Formula 1, BBC Sport has featured a detailed report by Gary Anderson, the former technical director of the Jordan, Stewart and Jaguar teams, now the BBC’s F1 technical analyst.
Anderson’s view on the Mercedes row is: “Regardless of what other agreements may have been reached, the sporting regulations explicitly forbid the use of a current car for any form of testing other than within strict limits, which the Mercedes one fell outside.
“Equally, while Pirelli say Mercedes will not have gained anything from the test, that’s simply not the case. It may well have been in strictly controlled conditions, but any running a team does is beneficial.”
The matter is now in the hands of the FIA, the sports governing body, which will consider whether disciplinary action needs to be taken.
On the second tyres controversy, Anderson is equally emphatic: “Some teams maybe understand the tyres a bit more than others. Good for them. That’s important because they are the four things that connect the car to the ground.
“That’s not a reason to change the tyres; it’s a reason for some teams to do a better job.”
The next phase in this debate will unfold at the Canadian Grand Prix this weekend as the teams will be given examples of the new rear tyres Pirelli wants to introduce for the rest of the season.
Pirelli hope using them will convince the teams who are against changing the tyres that doing so will not, as they fear, put them at a competitive disadvantage.
To read the article in full go to https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/22762318