Pirelli says it will not hesitate to modify its Formula 1 tires next year if it feels the racing is getting boring.
As the Italian tire manufacturer continues its preparations for 2012, having tried out two different compounds in Friday practice in Brazil, its motorsport director Paul Hembery says Pirelli is keen to ensure teams never get comfortable with the rubber.
And after confessing that perhaps Pirelli had been too conservative in the last two events in India and Abu Dhabi, Hembery has indicated that its priority remains to keep the racing exciting.
"We know this season where we have either been right on the limit or too conservative," explained Hembery. "The only concern we have is that the teams are understanding far too well how the tires are working.
"I don't think I can nominate super-soft for a race yet, but we can make changes during the year as well. And we will not hesitate to do that if we feel it is becoming boring.
"It is very interesting, talking to some of the drivers. They say that while they were a little bit alarmed at the start of the season, now they are actually saying, 'We want you to be more aggressive,' because they have understood they can control the situation a lot."
To help ensure things are kept exciting next year, Hembery has said that the plan is to ensure the gap between compounds is closer and that the softer family of tires are both quicker and degrade more.
"It is all to do with crossover points," he said. "The softer tires – the super-soft and the soft – need to be fast but degrade. The medium and harder tire need to be slower but be more stable, and basically you have to work how many laps you go before you are better off being on the other one. That is a simplistic way of looking at it.
"This year we haven't had that. We have had the soft used everywhere, and now unfortunately drivers are doing 20 laps plus, and then the harder tire is used for a small stint at the end, because the performance gap is too far away.
"If that performance gap is closer then there would have been a benefit to using the harder tire much earlier on in the race weekend, or in the race."
Hembery also said that Pirelli wants three stops to become the norm in races next year.
"Having been talking to people – so it is not factual but a straw poll – three would be a nice level," he explained. "It seems to break up the afternoon quite nicely and I think four is going one too many, but two is OK. So some races will be two, some three, and maybe a few four stops just to keep people on their toes. If we can get three more often than not, we would be happy and the teams would be as well."