Pirelli tease potential pit stop rule change

Date published: December 13 2018

PirellI: Move to two pit stops?

Pirelli Motorsport director Mario Isola claims he is open to the idea of increasing the number of mandatory race pit stops to two.

Under the current regulations, drivers are required to make at least one pit stop in a race, while also being obliged to run two of the available three tyre compounds.

Isola claimed that while he was sceptical about changing the pit stop ruling, he would encourage teams to go away and provide simulation data to understand how it would affect races.

Speaking via racefans.net, he said: “I’m not sure it’s the right solution because there is the big risk that everybody stops on the same lap, or very close, so basically you are just generating shorter stints where probably drivers can push more.

“They can use the softest available compound because the stints are shorter but there is no variation in the strategies.

“This doesn’t mean that it is a worse situation. It could be good, we don’t know. We asked the teams to make some simulations to understand how they can react to a change of regulation.

“For me that’s an important point. Any time there is an idea before trying to implement the idea it is very useful that we go back to the teams and we tell them try to make a simulation with these rules and see what happens.

“This is because sometimes we believe that we have a very good idea and we discover it is not.”

Teams also rejected a proposal to scrap the qualifying rule which forces half the grid to start on old tyres.

The ruling was introduced in 2010 requiring drivers who qualify in the top 10 to start with a used set of Q3 tyres. This was changed in 2014 to a used set of Q2 tyres.

Some midfield drivers avoided running in Q2 this season to have a free choice of tyres for the race, something which Isola believes can be addressed without a rule change.

“There was a proposal to remove the rule that obliges the top 10 to start with the tyres used in quali but it was not approved,” he said.

“If we go a bit more conservative in the selection I think that in quali there is no reason to try to use the medium, the one in the middle, instead of the softest, because the advantage is probably less.

“At this point of the year you need unanimity to change the rules for next year, no changes are planned.”

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