Pirelli can only raise tyre pressures for Zandvoort banking
Pirelli says it will have no choice but to increase the tyre pressures for the Dutch Grand Prix next year to cope with the 18-degree banked final corner at Zandvoort.
As part of a revamp needed to bring the venue up to Formula 1 standards, the final turn at the track is being reconstructed and will feature a 32% incline – with more than four metres of height difference between the top of the track and the bottom.
The steepness of the banking will be twice that of the corners at Indianapolis, which famously caused problems in 2005 when all the Michelin runners had to withdraw from the race.
Pirelli head of car racing Mario Isola says his company is aware of the challenges that the banked corner will bring – but says there are limited things it can do to ensure that there are no problems.
"The only thing we can do is to react with the pressure, and we will have to increase the starting pressure," said Isola.
"If you look at the regulation we are obliged to stay on the same construction and same specification for the whole year, so we cannot design a tyre for the banking and we cannot design a specific construction, for Zandvoort.
"So the only possibility is to try to manage the prescriptions in terms of camber and pressure."
Pirelli has obtained data from Zandvoort about the planned changes to the circuit, and has already run simulations about what extra stresses the banking will bring.
Isola added: "We have also made a simulation of the track being completely flat and with the camber, so you can see the difference in terms of additional load on the tyre. That was what we had in mind to calculate.
"But now to make a proper investigation, we need to receive the simulation from the teams and then we are in a position to define the pressure."
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