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Free choice of tires: New ideas from Pirelli, Red Bull and Mercedes

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B At the last meeting of the strategy group, Force India proposed an individual tire choice approved for 2016. The teams should then be able to register their two tire compounds with Pirelli 4 weeks before a Grand Prix. All teams liked the idea, but not at Pirelli.

The tire manufacturer is afraid that one or the other will overdo it and take too high risks when choosing tires for the sake of a good starting position. Pirelli doesn't want stints of 4 or 5 laps to give the impression that the tires are minute burners.

The Italian tire manufacturer therefore presented the teams with its own model. It looks like this. They want to expand the range of rubber compounds for 2016 from 4 to 6 and bring 3 compounds to the races. Seven of the 13 sets for the entire weekend consist of the two standard options. The teams are free to choose six sets of tires from the remaining offer.

However, Pirelli then wants to abolish the rule that the top ten start on the tires with which the drivers have qualified. Out of the fear that someone would drive himself forward to the starting grid with extra-soft tires and then after a few laps he would be in the pits for the first tire change.

Red Bull and Mercedes with their own tire ideas

Red Bull brought a wildcard solution into play. In 5 races, each team may choose an additional mix to those on offer. Mercedes also brought in its own tire model. Before the season begins, Pirelli explains how soft you can go in the 19 races. The FIA ​​teams then inform the FIA ​​four weeks before the race which two tire types they will choose from the range limited by Pirelli.

The FIA ​​tells Pirelli which compounds they have to bring with them for the Grand Prix and in what number. The rabbit is not pulled out of the hat until 4 days before the race. The association tells who drives which tires. As usual, the teams could not agree on one of the many proposals. 'The discussion will continue,' promised Lotus operations manager Alan Permane.

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