Pirelli ready for the new GP3 season
The 2011 GP3 season will feature eight rounds supporting the Formula One Grands Prix in Europe, starting at the beginning of May and ending in mid-September. During each race weekend a practice and qualifying session will take place, followed by two races.
Before the start of the 2011 season, a total of eight official test days will be held firstly at Paul Ricard (France) from 2-4 March, followed by Silverstone (Great Britain) from 28-31 March and finally Barcelona (Spain) from 11-14 April. An additional two mid-season tests will follow: the first in Valencia (Spain) from 16-17 June and the second one replacing the Monaco round, with the date and venue still to be confirmed.
Throughout 2011, Pirelli will supply over 10,000 tires to the GP3 Series, including all the official test sessions. As was the case in 2010, three types of dry weather compound (Hard, Medium and Soft) and one type of Wet weather compound will be produced. At races, three sets of control slicks will be allocated to each car per event, along with two sets of Wet tires if necessary. Together with the championship organizers, Pirelli will nominate in advance the single dry-weather compound that will be brought to each race for competitors to use.
Pirelli will bring its Soft compound tires to the Paul Ricard and Valencia tests, while the Hard slicks will be tested at Silverstone and Barcelona. The choice of the compounds is in line with the characteristics of the tracks that will be used for the forthcoming test sessions.
At the request of the GP3 Series organizers, Pirelli will bring slightly different compound specifications to this year's races compared to last season.
"For Pirelli, 2010 has not only been a season of action-packed GP3 racing but also a year of intense testing to further develop its GP3 racing tires,” Pirelli's Motorsport Director Paul Hembery said. “Test after test, round after round, more data and feedback has been collected and the tires have been adjusted accordingly. As tires are a vital tool that young drivers need to learn to manage in their future careers, a degree of artificial degradation has been added to the rubber. Having tires capable of higher performance with less durability should certainly spice up the on-track action, ensuring even more spectacular and closely fought race weekends. We now look forward to the pre-season tests to see how GP3 drivers will handle their new tires. "