- Silverstone Test - Day Two
18-inch tyres will present 'big challenge' for teams - Pic
After becoming the first driver to test Pirelli's new 18-inch tyres, Charles Pic believes it will be a "big challenge" for teams and drivers to adapt to low-profile tyres should Formula One adopt them in the future.
Pic completed 14 laps on the new tyres, setting a time five seconds off the nearest competitor, but Pirelli stressed that Wednesday's running was purely for demonstration purposes. However, Pic said the change in wheel size had a big effect on the aerodynamics of the car and would require a serious re-design should the larger rims be introduced.
"It's true that they are more reactive and more nervous," he said. "On top of that you lose a lot of aero, it's really a lot. It's not like you are in Monza configuration, it is less than that because of the aero you lose on this type of tyre. The combination of this means I was five or six seconds off the pace and if you look at the handling it is of course not good, but it wasn't the point of the test.
"I think if we go one day to this type of tyre it will be a big challenge. First for the team because they will have to build a completely new car around this. The philosophy is completely different and you would need to build all the car around this type of tyre. I think it will also be a challenge for the driver because they are completely different. On the looks side it's looking for sure different, so I think some people will like them and some people not."
Pic's speed on the straights was limited for the runs on the new tyres and he was told to give the kerbs a wide berth, but he is confident the data he gathered was still positive for Pirelli.
"Overall grip was very low and we were five or six seconds off the pace. But the main goal was to give some data to Pirelli and that's what we did."