Tyre worries for 2022: The understeer gone?

At the 18 inch tire tests in Abu Dhabi in December, many drivers report a sudden tendency to understeer. However, the engineers of the teams are confident of getting the balance right with the 2022 cars.

The first tires of the abilities 2022 are already baked and are on the ship overseas. Pirelli started production of the new 18 inch rubbers immediately after the last test drives in Abu Dhabi in mid-December . Adjustments to the mixtures and the construction were not necessary, the responsible persons report with satisfaction.

Sports director Mario Isola drew a positive conclusion: “The data at Take a look at in Abu Dhabi have confirmed our findings from the development phase. No further changes are planned for 2022.” But there are still small question marks. Abu Dhabi does not wrestle very ideally profitably for a tire test. The tarmac is relatively smooth on the winding desert circuit and the cornering speeds are low.

Only the stress test on the rough surface and in the fast corners of Barcelona will the Winter tests at the end of February show whether the tire really lives up to expectations. Pirelli is hoping for a mild Catalan winter to gather useful data. Snow, like a few years ago, is not needed now before the big rule revolution.

Pirelli hopes that the tires will be fitted with the right 2022er cars work better than with the converted “mule cars”.

Understeer with new cars gone?

Abu Dhabi brought at least a few new insights. “We got feedback from the drivers that the rear tire is very strong compared to the front. This led to a tendency to understeer,” reveals Isola. Because the teams drove with so-called “mule cars”, there were only limited possibilities for countermeasures during the setup.

With the poorly converted racing cars, the engineers tries to simulate the downforce level of upcoming abilities. In addition, the suspension and the vehicle height were adjusted. The teams’ technicians believe that they can compensate for the shifted aero balance relatively easily with the new cars. The effect was not unexpected, which is why the worries are limited, they say.

Isola hopes that the new cars will also reduce the loss of time somewhat will. The lap times in Abu Dhabi with the new 13 customs officers were on average 1.5 seconds faster than the 13-Zöller. “That’s acceptable considering the mule cars weren’t optimally matched to the tires. They should work significantly better on the new cars.”

Due to the smaller cross-section of the tires, the teams will have to drive less camber on the front axle in the future. For the take a look at in Abu Dhabi, Pirelli’s specifications have not yet been adapted to the new tires for the sake of simplicity. That may have been one of the reasons for the balance issues.

For easier logistics in the corona pandemic, Pirelli gave the tire types. The teams liked this approach.

Pirelli specifies tire types

What the fight against overheating and wear and tear, according to Isola, expectations have been met. Only a somewhat annoying graining on the front axle with the softer compounds caused problems for the drivers when they went to the limit for a little longer. But this misfortune should also disappear in Barcelona, ​​Pirelli hopes. On the Spanish Sizable Prix track, the harder types are used.

Speaking of tire types: The specifications for the number of individual compounds also remain 2022 receive. Before the corona pandemic, the teams could put together their own delivery. “The teams wanted to keep the new system. They then don’t have to assign extra employees to make an individual selection. All that remains is the analysis of how to best use the given tires,” explains Isola.

So it remains as before with two sets of hard tires, three times medium and eight softs. However, discussions are still ongoing with the teams as to whether the selection for the race weekends with Mosey races should not be adjusted. It is being considered whether a special choice of tires can generate a little more excitement.

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