Pirelli suspects that debris on the track caused the tire failure suffered by Sebastian Vettel in the closing minutes of today's tire test in Abu Dhabi.
The World Champion sustained the failure on his right-rear wheel, but had no problem bringing the car to a halt safely. Pirelli had already seen signs of small cuts in some rear tires and has suffered no similar failures during its extensive test running using a 2009 Toyota TF109.
"We had an instant deflation right at the end of the day coming up to Turn 11," said Hembery. "The guys are out on the track now having a look to see what caused it. In general, the track is quite dirty after six days of running and there's a lot of debris on the track. We were starting to notice some cuts on the rear tires.
"It's nothing untoward – we just want to find out what's causing it."
Despite the problem, Hembery was pleased with Pirelli's first day of running with the 12 Formula 1 teams.
"I'd rate the day as very successful," said Hembery. "You can imagine coming here after testing only in Europe, and for the last few months it has been chilly, so we haven't been able to test with high track temperatures. And we had 12 different drivers and cars, which was interesting and gave us a fantastic amount of information. The guys will be working through the night to analyze the information that we have."