Italian Grand Prix Preview
For its home race in Monza, Pirelli will bring the medium, soft and supersoft tyres, just as was the case last year.
This selection has been chosen to provide the optimal balance between performance on the track known as the ‘temple of speed’, and durability to cope with the energy loads that those high speeds will put through them. In particular, with the latest cars, cornering speeds will be appreciably higher in Parabolica and Lesmo. With Italy emerging from one of the hottest summers ever, temperatures could be high during the Italian Grand Prix weekend: increasing demands on the tyres still further.
The Circuit From A Tyre Point Of View
• Monza is characterized by long straights: in theory, this could mean a lower gap time gain compared to other tracks, due to the extra drag of this year’s high-downforce cars.
• Monza is about longitudinal forces, acceleration and braking, rather than lateral.
• There are also some big kerbs that test the tyre’s structure with heavy impacts.
• While there’s unlikely to be an increase in top speed in Curva Grande, entry speeds for Parabolica and Lesmo will be up to 30kph faster.
• Teams generally run very low downforce to maximise top speeds. This can make acceleration and braking tricky.
• A one-stop strategy won last year but two and three stop strategies were also seen.
• It’s a circuit that rewards power, so the focus will be primarily on engine performance.
Mario Isola - Head Of Car Racing
“With the new generation of 2017 cars, we may see lower or similar top speeds to last year, but with more energy going through the tyres because of the extra downforce under the new regulations. This combination of speed and downforce defines the amount of work that the tyres have to do. The tyre choice has also been influenced by the risk of blistering at Monza, as there are plenty of braking areas in a straight line. This means that the cambered shoulder area of the tyre can easily overheat and so cause more blistering compared to other circuits. In the past Monza has given us many different types of weather, but following a very hot summer, it’s reasonable to expect more high temperatures over the weekend. How this influences tyre behaviour is likely to be a focus of free practice as the teams examine different potential strategies”.