ERJ staff report (DS)
Milan, Italy - Pirelli brings around 1800 tyres to each Formula 1 grand prix, all made in a specific production run before each race. They are manufactured at Pirelli's motorsport facility in Izmit, just outside the Turkish capital of Istanbul.
During the production process, each tyre is allocated a barcode provided by the FIA (the sport's governing body). This barcode is the tyre's 'passport', which is embedded firmly into the structure during the vulcanisation process and cannot be swapped. The code contains all the details of each tyre, making it traceable throughout the race weekend with Pirelli's RTS (Racing Tyre System) software, which can read and update all the data.
After passing through the comapny's logistics base in the UK, the tyres are shipped to the circuit and then allocated to the teams according to the list that has been previously prepared by the FIA. The bar codes allow both the FIA and Pirelli to ensure that the right teams, according to the regulations, are using the correct tyres.
As Pirelli's motorsport director Paul Hembery points out: â€œEven if we wanted to - which we certainly don't - there is no way that we could influence which tyres are being allocated to which teams, as this is a job taken care of entirely by the FIA once the tyres have left the Izmit factory. It is just another way that impartiality can be ensured among all the teams, which is a huge priority for us as exclusive tyre supplier. The way that our team engineers work also respects this confidentiality, which is always of paramount importance.â€
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Press release from Pirelli (longer story with more detail)