The FIA have adjusted the sporting regulations to state that new tyre testing will be compulsory for teams this season on Pirelli’s request.
The 2019 tyre compounds were carried over to 2020 after teams tested a new prototype and decided to stay with the 2019 specifications.
But with the planned new regulations pushed back until 2022, there were concerns that the tyres would struggle to cope with the increased load on them as the cars are developed for a third season under stable regulations.
Already the FIA have introduced new restrictions on development of the rear floor for 2021, which will therefore limit the amount of downforce created and the strain placed on the tyres.
But just in case the tyres can’t cope in 2021, the FIA have changed the rules so that Pirelli can have extra tyre testing if they want it.
The idea is to give Pirelli the option to tweak their tyres for 2021, but if 70% of the teams agree then they can change the tyre specifications this season.
Originally Pirelli could bring one extra specification of dry tyre for teams to test on a race weekend, but now they can bring more than one.
And the last half hour of FP2 on Friday has now been assigned for testing the new compounds. Previously the tyres would be available throughout FP1 and FP2 and would commonly be run early in the day when track conditions were not representative.
Pirelli will establish the running programme and in that 30-minute period teams can’t carry out any other work.
As stated by Autosport, the rule now reads as follows: “Testing of these additional specifications will be mandatory for all cars, unless the car in question has suffered irreparable damage.
“Testing of these additional specifications must be carried out in the last 30 minutes of P2. The supplier will specify the testing schedule for each competitor during this time interval. Any other on track and/or testing activity not specified by the supplier is not permitted.
“Each competitor may not necessarily be given the same tyre specifications to evaluate. The total number of laps required from each car during this time interval will be the same for all cars.”
Teams must be given two-weeks notice of any new tyre testing now instead of one week, and while these tests can’t take place outside of race weekends, one day immediately after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix has been set up for rookie testing where teams can run two cars.
All testing for the 18-inch tyres that were set to come in under the new regulations has been pushed back to 2021.