Pirelli’s motorsport director Paul Hembery has spoken of his frustration following Friday’s free practice sessions where the prototype compound brought to the race failed to be evaluated due to the weather.
“Because of the rain, it meant that the drivers didn’t get as much running as they would have liked on the two sets of new prototype tyres that we brought here for free practice only, which is actually the same prototype hard tire that we brought to Spain last month,” Hembery said in a statement from Pirelli.
“On that occasion the running on this tire was curtailed again due to rain during free practice. So that was frustrating but not all together surprising this time, given that we’re in England!”
Even when the traditional British weather did subside and dry running was possible, the conditions were still not suitable for collecting data.
“This afternoon’s session finally had some running on the prototype tires but we did not gain a lot of data because of a lack of track time this morning,” Hembery explained.
“The medium and hard race compounds so far show a difference in lap time of around one second, but we still have plenty of data to analyse. With tomorrow and Sunday expected to be dry, it will be interesting to see how the teams adapt their strategies.”
Much would need to be worked out, starting with how much garage and grandstand access would be afforded for a 2021 season opener that likely would occur during a still ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
He was a spectator (with racing legend Mario Andretti) at four-time champion Jeff Gordon’s final Cup race as a full-time in the 2015 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In 2011, Hamilton swapped cars with three-time champion Tony Stewart at Watkins Glen International.
Having rubbed shoulders with other racing greats so often, it only would be fitting if Hamilton — who is one victory from tying Michael Schumacher’s career record and also could tie the F1 record with a seventh championship this season — spent some time with the greatest basketball player of all time.