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'Pirelli should've stuck to their guns'

Sunday 14-July-2013 09:08

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh feels Pirelli should have made tweaks to their tyres earlier in the season.

Having copped a lot of flak over the high degredation levels, the tyre manufacturer attempted to make changes to their rear compounds after the Spanish Grand Prix but they were blocked by the Ferrari, Force India and Lotus.

The trio had come to grips with the tyres very well and they feared any changes would have a negative effect on their competitiveness.

However, Pirelli was soon on the receiving end of more criticism after several drivers suffered blowouts at the British Grand Prix. This time, though, all the teams agreed that the Italian manufacturer should be allowed to make changes on safety grounds.

Whitmarsh believes Pirelli should've stuck to their guns earlier and tweaked the tyres instead of listening to some teams.

"When you have made mistakes, and certainty we've made them over the years including this one, there is always a reluctance to admit them," Whitmarsh is quoted as saying by Autosport.

"There is always a fear of what the media will make it. But it was also clear to many that there were issues with the tyres.

"There was a reluctance to admit it - and teams will always lobby for their own competitive self-interest.

"As I said to Pirelli for quite a few weeks before Silverstone: 'You cannot listen to the teams on this one. You guys are the tyre experts; you have responsibility to give us safe tyres. You have to make the right call'.

"Pirelli got themselves a bit caught in the middle listening to the teams, especially those that didn't want anything to change."

Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery echoed Whitmarsh's views.

"I think sometimes we have been too good citizens trying to do everything right, and every time we try and push something we get into trouble," he said.

"We are only interested in doing our job; we are not interested in helping anyone else."

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