Wolff: Hamilton’s tyre dream a ‘physical impossibility'

Toto Wolff feels Lewis Hamilton’s dream to have long-lasting, high grip Formula 1 tyres is a “physical impossibility” amid calls for Pirelli to make changes in the future.

Wolff: Hamilton’s tyre dream a ‘physical impossibility'

Mercedes F1 driver Hamilton aired concerns about the current quality of Pirelli’s tyres following his Spanish Grand Prix victory, saying that fans did not want to see races based on tyre management alone.

Hamilton expanded on his comments earlier this week, calling on Pirelli to offer a tyre with similar grip levels to the hypersoft compound previously used, while also making the construction such that drivers could push with confidence.

Read Also:

Mercedes team principal Wolff acknowledged that Pirelli was in a “difficult situation” with its F1 compounds given the continued increases in car performance year-on-year.

“They need to cope with the level that we are developing a F1 car with more and more downforce, and they can’t really create a new product every single year,” Wolff said.

“I would wish in the future for a good compromise between having the right tyre for modern Formula 1 cars, which will reduce in downforce quite considerably, and I think that we will stop these discussions that are on tyre pressures and are on loads with Pirelli.

“I hope that it would be an easier job for them to deliver and supply a tyre that everybody is happy to race on.”

When asked about Hamilton’s suggestion, Wolff said that it was “probably a physical impossibility”.

Wolff added: “A tyre that has still that much grip and lasts for fifty percent of the race, that would be fantastic for the drivers. “I’m not sure it would provide a great show.”

The FIA has previously given Pirelli a ‘target letter’ with ideal specifications of what the tyre compounds should offer in terms of grip levels and durability.

The previous target letter shifted the focus to making the tyres more durable while also avoiding one-stop races.

A new target letter has been given to Pirelli for its 2022 tyres, which will switch from the existing 13-inch rims to 18-inch rims as part of F1’s technical overhaul.

Speaking on Friday, FIA head of single-seater matters Nikolas Tombazis recognised the task put to Pirelli in the past had been unrealistic.

"With hindsight, the first target letter did actually ask Pirelli to do impossible things, in terms of low degradation and being able to push all the time, but still having multiple pit stops and a crossover between tyres,” Tombazis said.

“It was, with hindsight, probably a bit setting goalposts where it's impossible to score. And I think we have to recognise that.

“But I think the work done with the initial 18-inch tyres shows that they are going definitely in the right direction.

"I think that the initial 18-inch tests were very promising. Hopefully we will get to a much better place in a year-and-a-half."

 

shares
comments

Related video

Binotto: Ferrari's Spa woes not just down to engine

Previous article

Binotto: Ferrari's Spa woes not just down to engine

Next article

F1 simulations predict Sakhir GP pole time of 53.9s

F1 simulations predict Sakhir GP pole time of 53.9s
Load comments
How the pitstop rules change has left F1 teams scrambling Prime

How the pitstop rules change has left F1 teams scrambling

The technical directive issued by Formula 1 to reduce levels of automation in pitstops has given teams an unwelcome period of adjustment. Although safety was the primary goal, it has already had a significant impact on the title race and puts extra pressure on teams to deliver as the season reaches the business end

How the pandemic is continuing to bite F1 Prime

How the pandemic is continuing to bite F1

Uncertainty over the shape of the calendar doesn’t just vex the fans and the commercial rights holder. MARK GALLAGHER explains at how race promoters have been pushed to the financial brink

Russian Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Russian Grand Prix driver ratings

The 2021 Russian GP was decided by late-arriving rain that allowed some to climb and caused others to plummet. But the events which played out beforehand are equally significant when considering the all-important driver ratings

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2021
The "blind faith" Mercedes call that won Hamilton his 100th F1 race Prime

The "blind faith" Mercedes call that won Hamilton his 100th F1 race

Until rain turned the Russian Grand Prix on its head in the closing stages, Lando Norris was set to convert his first Formula 1 pole position into a maiden win. But having recovered well from being shuffled back at the start, Hamilton and his Mercedes team called the changing conditions spot-on for a landmark 100th F1 victory

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2021
Why momentum is again behind Australia's aces Prime

Why momentum is again behind Australia's aces

At the Italian Grand Prix Daniel Ricciardo turned around a troubled F1 season and, in F2, Oscar Piastri demonstrated once again that he is a potential star of the future. BEN EDWARDS weighs up the prospects of F1 having two Australian stars

Formula 1
Sep 26, 2021
The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers Prime

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers

Michael Schumacher is the latest sporting superstar to get the ‘Netflix treatment’, with a special documentary film airing on the US streaming giant’s platform this month. DAMIEN SMITH has the inside track on how the filmmakers gained access to tell the human story behind one of Formula 1’s most publicity-shy champions - while the man himself, for obvious reasons, is in absentia… 

Formula 1
Sep 25, 2021
Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery Prime

Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery

For the second race in a row, Mercedes has ended the first day of track action on top. It’s in a commanding position at the Russian Grand Prix once again – this time largely thanks to Max Verstappen’s upcoming engine-change grid penalty. But there’s plenty to suggest all hope is not lost for the championship leader at Sochi...

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2021
Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1 Prime

Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2021