- Tyre news
Qualifying tyres still an option
Pirelli's director of motorsport Paul Hembery has said that the idea of qualifying tyres is still on the table if the teams want to prevent non-running in qualifying.
It became apparent during 2011 that some teams making it through to the final part of qualifying were happy to save tyres and not set a lap time in order to be in a better strategic position for the race. Pirelli suggested the possibility of reintroducing qualifying tyres - last used in 1991 - to prevent such a situation in the future, and despite the idea not being implemented for 2012 Hembery told ESPNF1 that it was still an option if the same issue occurred this season.
"For the future we'd happily do it, if the sport wants it and the teams want it then we're happy to come up with some solutions for qualifying," Hember said. "If the non-running in Q3 becomes an issue for the fans and the spectators at home we're willing to work with everybody to find a solution.
"Of course we felt it wasn't a great spectacle to have that (drivers not running) and the teams will tell you that it adds to the tactical intrigue because some teams are actually running more kilometres than even the people qualifying on pole position but then aren't running in Q3 so they will actually have a little tactical advantage when the start of the race comes round."
Hembery did warn that any changes implemented would have to be minor because he feels that the three-session format of qualifying is a successful one.
"There are different points of view, we're obviously willing to help and provide whatever support is needed, but overall we would prefer to see all the cars running in Q3. Let's see if the problem is still one that we discuss during next season. The actual format of qualifying is actually very good, it works very well so it's only a minor tweak that would be needed but if we can do something to help we will."