Imola will be the scene this weekend of the sixth round of the 2023 Formula 1 World Championship, the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix. Pirelli will bring the following compounds to the first home grand prix:
Pirelli PZero White Hard C3
Pirelli PZero Yellow Medium C4
Pirelli PZero Red Soft C5
The Italian manufacturer, the sole supplier of Formula 1 tyres, has thus decided to bring the softer compounds of its 2023 range. This, we recall, goes from the C0 – the hardest – to the C5, the softest.
The choice made by Pirelli is the same already seen in Baku, home of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Also in that case, in fact, the three softest compounds were used. This is therefore the second case of the season in which we see the more performing tires at work.
The tires on the track
The greater softness of the compounds could open up more racing strategies. Imola is in fact traditionally a one-stop race but with a trio of tires that are less harsh than in the past, the teams will have more alternatives. The Enzo and Dino Ferrari racetrack celebrated its 70th birthday this year. Having been completed in 1953. Imola is a “classic” track, narrower than the more modern ones and it is also for this reason that overtaking is particularly demanding but, at the same time, more spectacular. The asphalt, despite having been laid several years ago, is moderately abrasive on the tyres. The track is smooth and lateral and longitudinal forces are balanced. The downforce and the evolution of the track are also average. In 2022 the Made in Italy and Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix was held on the penultimate weekend of April, a month earlier than this season: theoretically there should be higher temperatures but, at the moment, it is expected that they will hardly exceed 20°C.
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix: Mario Isola’s comment
Mario Isola, head of Pirelli Motorsport, expressed his expectations regarding the sixth round of the 2023 World Championship, the first home race for the Milanese tire manufacturer:
“The first round in Europe of the 2023 season will offer two important innovations in terms of tyres, both aimed at improving the environmental sustainability of our sport.
The first concerns qualifying: at Imola we will be testing a new regulation which requires the use of a different type of compound for each of the three sessions, with the Hards scheduled for Q1, the Mediums for Q2 and the Softs for Q3. This entails a reduction – from 13 to 11 – of the sets of dry tires that each driver has available throughout the event, thus generating a decrease in the impact generated by the production and transport of the tyres”.
“Always with the same aim, starting from this Grand Prix a new compound will be introduced for the Full Wet tires which will not require the use of tire warmers before being used. Track tests have shown even better performance than the previous Cinturato Blue Full Wet, albeit without electric heating of the tyre.It is a first concrete step, the result of studies carried out by Pirelli, towards the use of dry tires without preheating.
Finally, we have chosen to bring our range of softer compounds (C3, C4 and C5) to Imola, which could offer the teams a wider range of strategic options ahead of the race.”
Minimum pressures at the start (slick tyres)