ERJ staff report (TP)
Milan, Italy – Pirelli and Formula One head to the German Grand Prix this weekend, with soft and supersoft the tires of choice.
The Grand Prix alternates each year between the Nürburgring and Hockenheim, and this time it is the turn of the latter, last used in 2012
Hockenheim (set for 17-20 July) is really a circuit of two halves: a tight and twisty stadium section, which is quite technical, then a fast series of straights. The P Zero Yellow soft tire has been selected alongside the P Zero Red supersoft: a combination last used in Austria.
Just like Austria and Silverstone, weather conditions in the upper Rhine valley can be unpredictable at this time of year, with a wide range of temperature variations possible. Following the German Grand Prix, the teams will go straight to Hungary (where the soft and medium tires are nominated): the first and only back-to-back race weekends in Europe this year.
Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director, said: “The only concrete F1 data we currently have is two years old – when the cars and the tires were very different.
“So we expect the Friday [18 July] free practice sessions to be extremely important, as the teams use the time to assimilate as much relevant information as they can.
“We’ve never been to Hockenheim with the supersoft before, but now that we have collected more data on the compounds this year, we think it should be well-suited to the varying demands of Hockenheim, which used to be one of the fastest circuits in the world, before it was modified in 2002.”
The winning strategy in 2012 was two stops, with the soft and medium tires allocated. Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso controlled the race from pole, only losing the lead during his pit stops, which he regained as the result of his strategy.