Paul Hembery has admitted Pirelli’s new soft tyre might not degrade quick enough in 2012. The sport’s new supplier was lauded at the beginning of 2011 for spicing up the action by bringing tyres that quickly degrade. But by the end of the season the teams had essentially solved the mysteries of the rubber, and in recent winter testing it seemed apparent that the 2012 tyre generation is not as inherently heavily-degrading as the last.
Motor sport director Hembery admits: “The soft tyres are not degrading quite as much as we would like. But you have to remember there will be 50 degree track temperatures in Malaysia. Also, the cars are still being developed, and over the course of the season will pick up downforce.
“If we have to heat up the show, we can always bring the super-softs,” he told Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport.
One positive aspect of the 2012 tyres, on the other hand, is that they are producing far less discarded rubber litter on the edge of the racing line.
“That should make it easier to overtake,” Hembery said.
Another positive is that the new tyres are easier to get up to temperature.
“Last year, only the two Red Bulls and Hamilton could get the hards to work,” agreed the Briton.