Formula 1 teams will get a chance to try out modified versions of the super soft and soft tires in Barcelona testing this week, with Pirelli confident that drivers are now getting used to the characteristics of its rubber.
Although the high degradation of Pirelli's tires caused a few surprises in early testing, Pirelli's motorsport chief Paul Hembery thinks that teams have made a lot of progress in understanding how to get the best out of their performance.
"We managed to collect a lot of data from our test with all the teams in Jerez and we've been very busy evaluating it to see what we can learn," said Hembery. "What's interesting is that the emphasis during testing is changing: as the teams get up to speed with their new cars the work has become much more focused, with some longer runs and potential race setups being evaluated. We've also got some evolutions of the supersoft and soft tires, which was always part of our development schedule."
The Barcelona test will be the last time that teams will get a chance to evaluate all four tire compounds. As for the final Bahrain test, the only choices will be the hard and the soft that will be used for the race itself. Hembery expects the challenges of Barcelona will help teams formulate better their tire strategies for the season ahead.
"Barcelona is a track that both ourselves and all the teams are very familiar with, so I'm sure we will come back with plenty of information once more," he explained. "Once more, the track characteristics are quite different from the two circuits that we have tested at before, which enables the teams to experience the behavior of our tires under a wide range of circumstances: something that will be crucial to formulating race strategies as the year goes on."