Lotus technical director James Allison has come out in support of this year’s Pirelli tires, claiming they are not as hard to deal with as other teams are making them out to be.
Pirelli made a return to F1 in 2011 and set out to cause multiple stop races to spice up racing, yet the teams quickly got to grips with the rubber and were soon managing one stop races in 2012.
To counter this, Pirelli created softer tire compounds which would degrade much easier and lead to more stops. Yet, three stops in Australia and some teams forced to stop four times in Malaysia saw criticism towards Pirelli that the tires are far too degradable.
This is not the sentiment of Lotus whose E21 is notably easy on its tires which gives it a huge advantage over other teams.
When asked by Autosport if he agreed with the criticism, Allison said,“Not really; they’re just one step softer all round than last year and the new construction makes it harder to access the rubber on the inner corner of the tyre. In other words, the available rubber is reduced as it’s very tricky to get the entire width of the tyre in contact with the road.
“Certain teams are keen for a switch back to last year’s rubber, but teams will always push for what’s in their best interest. We feel the current tyres makes for entertaining racing, but then we would say that as our car tends to prosper when the tyres are tender.”