Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli reported failures suffered by three cars near the end of the British Grand Prix which were caused by “extremely long use” on a demanding circuit.
Both Mercedes and the McLaren of Carlos Sainz suffered left-front failures in the final three laps of Sunday’s race which are said to have been stressed by teams running long stints after early pit stops under a safety car.
Pirelli F1 boss Mario Isola said he believed the right-rear tyre failure that triggered Daniil Kvyat’s Alpha Tauri to crash on lap 12 was “probably caused by a slow puncture”, but he said that the tyre had been sent back the company’s base in Milan for further investigation. This was the incident that prompted the safety car that led to the early pit stops.
Lewis Hamilton narrowly held on for victory in Sunday’s race after suffering a tyre failure early in the final lap, as he was heading down the Wellington Straight after Turn Five, the Loop.
Hamilton said after the race that “Mercedes had been told by Pirelli that the team “could do almost a whole race distance with it but [I don’t know] whether or not that’s at the pace we were going.”
However, Pirelli is sticking with its decision to supply softer tyres for this weekend’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, which will also be held at Silverstone, but is stipulating increased minimum tyre pressures “to reduce the stress on the construction.”