Mercedes conservative on tyres for Spa and Monza
Pirelli has released Formula 1 teams' tyre choices for the Belgian and Italian Grands Prix, two races which feature the medium, soft and supersoft compounds.
This combination of tyres was previously used in Bahrain and Spain earlier this year.
In both races there is some divergence between the top teams, especially for Spa, where Mercedes has taken a more conservative route than Ferrari, with a greater focus on the medium tyre for the high speed circuit.
For the Belgian event, both Mercedes drivers have taken three sets of mediums, four softs, and just six supersofts. Ferrari has split its choices, with Sebastian Vettel on two mediums, four softs and seven supersofts, and Kimi Raikkonen with just one medium, five softs, and seven supersofts.
Red Bull has taken even fewer mediums than Ferrari, with both drivers opting for only one set. Daniel Ricciardo has four softs and eight supersofts, and Max Verstappen five softs and seven supersofts.
Among the rest the most unusual choice is that of McLaren, with both drivers taking four softs, five softs, and just four supersofts, fewer than any of its rivals.
For Monza the following week the top three teams have opted for similar numbers of mediums, with all three giving two to one driver, and one to the other – but Ferrari has almost completely avoided the soft, and instead loaded up with mediums.
At Mercedes Lewis Hamilton has two mediums, three softs, and eight supersofts, while teammate Valtteri Bottas has one medium, four softs, and eight supersofts. In contrast at Ferrari Vettel has gone for two mediums, just one soft, and 10 supersofts, while Raikkonen has one medium, two softs, and 10 supersofts.
Red Bull is somewhere in the middle, with Ricciardo on two mediums, three softs, and eight supersofts, and Verstappen one medium, three softs, and just seven supersofts.
Once again McLaren is an outlier, with a bias away from the supersoft. Both drivers have two mediums, four softs, and only seven supersofts.
Photo by: Pirelli
Photo by: Pirelli