FIA should monitor tyre pressures, says Brawn

Ross Brawn insists that Mercedes ran above Pirelli’s minimum pressures at Silverstone – which means that one of the key reasons for the blowouts cited by the tyre company cannot account for the failure suffered by Lewis Hamilton.

Mercedes is however one of the teams which has been routinely running tyres on the ‘wrong’ side, one of the other factors cited by Pirelli.

Speaking before last night’s statement emerged, Brawn said it would be essential that the FIA become involved in monitoring pressures should they be deemed to be a contributing factor, something that Pirelli has now requested.

“I think pressure wise people were running within the recommended range of Pirelli, and it was also the most competitive range of the tyre,” Brawn told this writer.

“I think where you have a problem is when a tyre clearly performs at a pressure which is outside of their recommended range. If we get into a scenario where the solution is to run pressures which are outside the best performance of the tyre, then there’s got to be a really robust system to make sure people don’t abuse it.

“The good thing so far is that the pressures Pirelli want you to run are where the tyre works best anyway, so no one’s had any incentive to stray. I don’t think anyone was out there running excessively low pressures – certainly we weren’t.

“I think if Pirelli determine that running a higher minimum pressure is the answer, the FIA have got to step in and say right we’re going to police that or control that. If they don’t there will be accusations and potential abuse of the pressures, because it will mean performance.”

Regarding Silverstone, he said: “We had a recommendation [during the race] to keep the tyre pressures higher, which we did. So Nico and Lewis in the latter part of the race ran at the top end of the range that was recommended.

“Of course there was a slight worry after the safety car about keeping the pressures up. There was lots of encouragement to Nico and Lewis to keep the pressures as high as they could, do we didn’t restart behind the safety car with low pressures.”


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5 responses to “FIA should monitor tyre pressures, says Brawn

  1. Brace

    Why should anyone tell teams what they can do and can’t do. They just need to tell Pirelli and FIA (in confidence) if they are going to go beyond proposed parameters, be it pressure, camber, swapping left and right and simply take responsibility for it. I do understand that raising their hand in such an occasion will make it immediately obvious to the competition that there is something to be found there, but you can’t just let Pirelli take all the flack for your own misuse of tires in pursuit of performance. Pirelli was fair enough in keeping silent about all of that in order to avoid giving away each team’s secrets and they got crucified for it by the teams and ignorant “experts” in the media who are just shouting “off with their heads” and similar nonsense. This blog is one of the rare few that actually gives you insight, rather than just adding fuel to the fire.

    All in all, let the teams do whatever the hell they want with those tires, but make it perfectly obvious that it’s their responsibility, not Pirelli’s.

    They should just test pre-Silverston tires at the upcoming test, but with pressures, cambers etc done the way Pirelli proposes and with no tire swapping. If there’s no failure after 3 full days of testing, then tell the teams to do whatever the hell they want with the tires, because they are safe, but they still might fail if pushed beyond the limit, just like engine, gearbox and the whole car.

    That’s what F1 is and I’m glad that there is a component that still provides enough of an opportunity for lateral thinking in pursuit of performance, at the expense of reliability.

    Reminds of the times when cars were actually breaking down during the race, because everything was pushed beyond the limit, instead of having everyone finish 5 races with the same engine.

    I don’t understand why are we changing the tires instead of teams changing their settings…

  2. Richard K

    This really goes back to the previous blog post, but can anyone explain the advantage of running the tires on the wrong sides? Cheers.

    • Stone the Crows

      It always goes back to grip and contact patch. As I recall reversing them allowed running a different camber which made them more effective.

  3. Stone the Crows

    I agree with Brace, let the teams do what they want with the tyres just so long as its understood any failures don’t fall on Pirelli-that’s what they’ll do anyway. But really when you step back and look at all of this post-Silverstone kefuffle it is simply obfuscating the fact that Pirelli have not been able to test the tires sufficently to give the teams adequate parameters for performance. Creating regulations and having the stewards monitor the tyre pressure are absurd pallatives which only deal with the symptoms rather than going to cause. Pirelli were ready to give the teams a safer tyre for Silverstone if Ferrari, Lotus et. al had allowed them to do so. I

  4. Steve C

    Pirelli has recommended tire (sorry can’t get myself to type tyre) parameters to which they designed to and those parameters are what the teams are using and if the team goes out of those parameters shouldn’t the teams bare some of the responsibility?

    Wasn’t Pirelli asked to design in tire degradtion so that teams had to change tires during the race?

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