• Tyre news

Ecclestone praises 'brave' Pirelli

ESPNF1 Staff
May 19, 2011 « Abu Dhabi not sure circuit changes are necessary | »
Bernie Ecclestone with Pirelli president Marco Tronchetti Provera © Sutton Images
Related Links

Bernie Ecclestone has heaped praise on Pirelli for improving Formula One and being daring enough to produce tyres that degrade quickly.

Races have been exciting this season due to unpredictable strategies and the huge difference in the amount of grip offered by new and old tyres. This has been achieved by Pirelli deliberately manufacturing tyres that are only good for 15-25 laps, something that Ecclestone reckons the other tyre companies would not have been comfortable with.

"Only Pirelli would do it, and we must thank them," he told Blick. "It was brave and the show has improved. Michelin and Bridgestone refused to build tyres like this because they were worried about their image."

He claims "90 per cent" of the vastly different spectacle in 2011 is due to Pirelli. "The effect of the adjustable rear wing is not entirely clear, and KERS was never meant to be a passing aid but was instead for the message we give to the outside."

Ecclestone admits he is no fan of F1's efforts to appear 'green'.

"Some have KERS, some don't, and the ones that do have spent up to $15 million when we really wanted to save. An incredible amount of money was spent and nobody knows why. If we wanted it for overtaking, we could have done it like the A1 series and just put in a button for a few hundred dollars.

"Environmentally friendly technology is for touring cars. That's where it makes sense, because the cars you see there you also see on the street. If you compare formula one with other sports, it isn't bad. The Tour de France burns more fuel than us - just think of the Tour's huge entourage. The biggest consumption of gas is by the spectators who come to the event, but try saying to an organiser that he should sell 10% fewer tickets."