Teams try full range of Pirelli P Zero tyres at Barcelona

By on Friday, February 24, 2012

For the first time this year, the Formula One teams tried out the full range of Pirelli’s 2012 slick tyres, with the P Zero Silver hard, P Zero White medium, P Zero Yellow soft and P Zero Red supersoft all taking to the track in Barcelona.

In total the drivers completed 3697 laps, the equivalent of 17,207 kilometres.

At the second test of the year, the majority of the teams ramped up the development curve with their 2012 cars, seeing how they interact with the full range of Pirelli tyres on a circuit that is very familiar to all of them. A number of drivers also completed race simulations, again making use of all of Pirelli’s slick tyres. In particular, plenty of work was carried out using the medium tyre, which has been nominated for the first three races (together with the soft in Australia and China, and the hard in Malaysia).

The four-day test at the Circuit de Catalunya – the home of the Spanish Grand Prix – was characterised by quite cold temperatures in the mornings, which made it difficult for the teams to collect a large amount of representative data. The warmer conditions of the afternoon were better suited to the working range of the tyres and provided both Pirelli and the teams with some useful data and understanding of their behaviour. There was no rain, which means that the Cinturato Green intermediate and Cinturato Blue full wet tyres have yet to be tested.

Pirelli’s motorsport director Paul Hembery said: “It was an extremely productive four days, and we were helped by temperatures that – at least in the afternoons – were more representative of what we will expect to see during the season. The teams all completed the most amount of running that we have seen so far this year, 17,207 kilometres as opposed to 14,949 kilometres in Jerez. This allowed them to gather plenty of data on all four slick tyres that we can now analyse in order to come up with a few different scenarios for the first races related to strategy options and crossover points. As we expected, most teams chose to concentrate on the medium tyre, with the emphasis often on aerodynamic set-up work rather than tyre evaluation. However, we got plenty of work done and we’re satisfied with the levels of degradation and performance seen so far, as we head now into the final test again at Barcelona next week. It’s only then that we will see a more accurate picture of the relative performance of the teams, but from our point of view we are meeting our objectives.”


* Both the hardest and the softest slick tyres in Pirelli’s range set fastest times in Barcelona.

* Reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel topped the time sheets for Red Bull Racing on day one, setting a time of 1m23.265s with the P Zero Silver hard.

* The fastest time on the third day of the test was set by Williams driver Pastor Maldonado using the P Zero Red supersoft: 1m22.391s.

* The fastest time on the final day of the test was set by Sauber driver Kamui Kobayashi using the P Zero Yellow soft: 1m22.312s. This was the fastest time of the whole four-day test.

* The driver to complete the most laps at Barcelona was also Kobayashi who did 243 laps (the equivalent of 1131 kilometres).

* The fastest race lap at Barcelona last year was 1m26.727s while the pole lap was 1m20.981s – but with so many parameters being tested on the new cars, it is still hard to draw many firm conclusions.


* Total number of sets brought to Barcelona: 367 sets which equals 1468 tyres

- Of which Supersoft tyres: 34 sets

- Of which Soft tyres: 82 sets

- Of which Medium tyres: 110 sets

- Of which Hard tyres: 69 sets

- Of which Intermediate tyres:36 sets

- Of which Wet tyres: 36 sets

* Total amount of sets used: 257

- Of which Supersoft tyres: 16 sets

- Of which Soft tyres: 81 sets

- Of which Medium tyres: 95 sets

- Of which Hard tyres: 65 sets

- Of which Intermediate tyres: 0 sets

- Of which Wet tyres: 0 sets

* Longest run: 22 laps on the Hard compound

20 laps on the Medium compound

24 laps on the Soft compound10 laps on the Supersoft compound

* Highest / lowest ambient temperature over four days: 5 °C / 22 °C

* Highest / lowest track temperature over four days: 7 °C / 31 °C


Day 1

1. Vettel 1’23″265 on Hard New

2. Hülkenberg 1’23″440 on Medium New

3. Hamilton 1’23″590 on Soft New

Day 2

1. Hülkenberg 1’22’’608 on Supersoft New

2. Perez 1’22’’648 on Supersoft New

3. Vettel 1’22’’891 on Soft New

Day 3

1. Maldonado 1’22’’391 on Supersoft New

2. Schumacher 1’23’’384 on Soft New

3. Kobayashi 1’23’’582 on Soft New

Day 4

1. Kobayashi 1’22″312 on Soft New

2. Maldonado 1’22″561 on Supersoft New

3. Di Resta 1’23″119 on Supersoft New

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