F1 » Ecclestone sides with drivers over ‘flat out tyres' push 28 January 2016
Bernie Ecclestone says he will back driver requests for tyres they can race 'flat out' on, but says they must work with Pirelli to do so.
Ecclestone sides with drivers over ‘flat out tyres' push
Bernie Ecclestone says he is willing to stand by requests from drivers to introduce tyres that allow them to push throughout a race, but says they must meet halfway with Pirelli regarding testing.
The Italian firm has generally worked to a brief handed down by FOM of producing tyres that degrade more in an effort to spice up the racing and promote alternative strategies, though drivers have aired their dislike for this as it forces them to temper their pace and conserve rubber.
Though Pirelli has been more conservative with its tyres since 2014, drivers are worried the proposed changes for the 2017 regulations will be watered down over the Italian firm's concerns it won't be able to withstand the increased speeds, particularly without significant prior testing with appropriate machinery.
It comes as GPDA President Alexander Wurz revealed a proposal to argue the case for tyres that allow drivers to push from start-to-finish is ready to be presented, a move Ecclestone says he is ultimately supportive of.
"A million per cent [they should be flat out]. I have already told Pirelli that," he told the BBC, adding that he will be discussing with Pirelli at a meeting in Milan in February.
Though Pirelli has come in for criticism from drivers since its return as the control tyre supplier in 2011, Ecclestone has been a staunch defender of the company, urging drivers to air their opinions in private rather than in the media.
Indeed, Ecclestone says it is no use drivers and teams handing down demands if the 'top teams' are not willing to assist Pirelli in achieving them due to a reluctance to agree on testing parameters.
"The bottom line is Pirelli supply the tyres in F1, they are the tyres we should use and the teams and drivers should work with Pirelli to perfect the tyres," he continued.
"I want someone who can drive on the limit who can come back with an answer. Pirelli agree with me 100 per cent. That's what they have asked for - a top team with top drivers, not a team that can't push to the limit and certainly not a driver who can't."
Pirelli said earlier this week that it is willing to supply 'flat out' tyres if it is requested by the commercial rights holder to do so.
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