Pirelli’s 2017 F1 tires to offer ‘much less degradation’

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Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery has confirmed that Formula 1 tires will offer “much less degradation” in 2017.

As part of the planned overhaul of the technical regulations for next season, Pirelli was requested to provided wider, more durable tires.

The Italian supplier agreed to do so after striking a deal to get a comprehensive testing programme that would allow it to fully evaluate its new compounds.

“We will have much less degradation in 2017 and tires will – if we achieve what we are trying to achieve – have a wider operating window,” Hembery told the official F1 website.

Although the extra durability will see a reduction in the number of pit stops in races, Hembery is confident it will lead to quicker laps and more spectacular racing.

“And yes, that in itself will take away some level of strategy – or at least variations between teams,” Hembery said.

“Having said that, we will still try to achieve some level of degradation! What we definitely will see is faster cars. We expect a three to four second improvement in performance, which is clearly quite substantial.

“So the tyres will be working very hard and the compounds will be working hard – and that will cause degradation, so we will still have a good level of strategy.”

Recent F1 driver Pastor Maldonado has been completing some preliminary testing for Pirelli.

“It’s going quite good,” he told NBC Sports in Iowa last weekend.

“It should be good for the start of the season.”