New tires haven’t made F1 boring – Pirelli

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The revised tires introduced after the British Grand Prix have not made for dull races, Pirelli claim.

F1’s official tire supplier revised its product after a series of high-speed tire failures at Silverstone.

But it denied the more conservative compounds have sapped the life from recent races.

Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery dismissed the claim as “nonsense”, telling Autosport: “I thought the German and Hungarian Grands Prix were two of the best races we had ever had in Germany and Hungary.”

Sebastian Vettel has won three of the four races since Silverstone but Hembery says his success is not down to Pirelli’s change of policy

“We try to do our bit – but there is only so much we can do,” said Hembery. “At the end of the day, Red Bull has done a phenomenal job and Sebastian has been great.”

Pirelli’s tire choice for this weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix – the super-soft and medium tires – is more conservative than what has been used before.

“The tires we are bringing to Singapore this year represent a change from last year, when we went for super-soft and soft,” Hembery explained. “This is because the tires are generally softer across the board this year in order to maximize performance and grip.”

Lewis Hamilton receives Daytona 500 invitation from Bubba Wallace

Lewis Hamilton Bubba Wallace
Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images
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Lewis Hamilton is a fan of the new NASCAR Cup Series team formed by Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan to field a car for Bubba Wallace.

Will the six-time Formula One champion also be a fan in person at a NASCAR race in the near future?

Wallace is hoping so.

After Hamilton tweeted his support Tuesday morning about the news of a Hamlin-Jordan-Wallace team making its debut with the 2021 season, Wallace responded with a sly invitation to the Daytona 500.

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.

But it would seem fitting given that Hamilton and Wallace have been two of the world’s most outspoken Black athletes about the quest for diversity and racial justice. Hamilton recently reaffirmed his commitment to activism after his donning a Breonna Taylor shirt sparked an FIA inquiry.

The idea of Hamilton attending the season opener already had legs, too. The Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 driver has expressed a desire to race the Daytona 500 after he has retired from Formula One.

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.

Jeff Gordon was flanked by Mario Andretti and Lewis Hamilton before the 2015 Cup season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway (Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images).