Pirelli: Medium and soft compounds for one of the shortest laps of the year

All types of weather possible: From the record temperatures of last year to torrential rain

Milan – The P Zero White medium and P Zero Yellow soft compound have been nominated for this year’s Brazilian Grand Prix: the most popular combination of the season, which has been selected for the ninth and final time in 2015.

Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director: “Interlagos is one of those historic venues that has helped to shape the history of Formula One, so it’s a pleasure to come here and experience once more the unique atmosphere and passion from the local fans, at the end of what is our first American triple header in Formula One, with races in the United States, Mexico and now Brazil. South America and Brazil in particular is one of Pirelli’s biggest global markets, so this is a particularly important race for us, as we are so widely represented here.

The changes to the asphalt at Interlagos last year altered the pattern of tyre behaviour, so it will be interesting to see how that affects tyre usage this year. Traditionally, Interlagos is quite a high-energy circuit for tyres, so we would expect to see two or three pit stops for the majority of competitors. As always though, we will only have an accurate picture of the real situation after the opening free practice sessions on Friday.”

The biggest challenges for the tyres

The circuit is rear-limited, with the right-rear tyre being the most stressed due to the anti-clockwise layout – which is also the case at the next and final venue on the calendar, in Abu Dhabi.

Tyres are often subjected to combined forces at Interlagos: in other words lateral and longitudinal demands at the same time. This raises the temperature of the compound. Downforce levels are generally high, with aerodynamic and mechanical grip requirements roughly in equal proportion.

Last year’s strategy and how the race was won: There was heatwave last year, so this was not entirely typical of what we would expect to see this time. In 2014, Nico Rosberg won the race for Mercedes using a three-stop strategy. He started on the soft tyre and then changed to the medium on laps seven, 26 and 50. The highest-placed two-stopper, Kimi Raikkonen, finished seventh.

Expected performance gap between the two compounds: 0.9 seconds per lap.

The Pirelli team choose their race numbers: #77, Didem Portakal, logistics manager
“There’s a very simple reason behind this: 77 is the year of my birth, so it’s an obvious choice really.”

Pirelli Motorsport

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Brazilian GP
Track Interlagos
Article type Preview