• Bahrain Grand Prix

Pirelli revises tyre choice for Bahrain

ESPN Staff
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The soft tyre will not be used in Bahrain © Sutton Images
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Pirelli has changed its compound choices for the Bahrain Grand Prix, switching the soft compound for the harder medium ahead of next weekend's race.

Previously Pirelli had intended to bring soft and hard tyres to the desert race but after the softs suffered high levels of degradation in China, the Italian tyre supplier has announced it is bringing its two hardest compound choices. As a result the teams will use the medium and hard compounds, with heat and dust on the circuit expected to have a big effect on tyre degradation.

"It's one of the most demanding tracks of the year for the tyres, mostly because of the high ambient and track temperatures," Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery said of Sakhir. "We expect about three stops per car, although we'll have to wait to get some running in on Friday before we can look at the data and make a more accurate prediction.

"One of the main challenges of racing in Bahrain is that the track evolution is very hard to predict, depending on how much sand is blown onto the circuit. From what we saw last year though, there will be plenty of scope for different race strategies, which can even allow drivers who have not qualified as well as they hoped to recover during the grand prix."

Pirelli's pre-race press release added: "The expected lifespan of the hard tyre, when it comes to wear, should be 15-17 laps, whereas the medium tyre should last for approximately 13 to 15 laps."

The revised tyre selection comes after complaints from some corners of the paddock about Pirelli's compound choices. However, after the Chinese Grand Prix Hembery said: "If we do make changes we will announce them after Bahrain and before Barcelona."