Pirelli F1 Boss Comes Clean After Bottas, Norris Tyre Blowouts at the Qatar Grand Prix

Published 11/22/2021, 4:23 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Qatar Grand Prix – Losail International Circuit, Lusail, Qatar – November 19, 2021 AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly in action during practice REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed


Pirelli has launched an investigation into multiple tyre punctures witnessed over the weekend in Qatar. This was the first time this circuit hosted a Formula 1 race. Naturally, there was no data on tyre degradation that the supplier could have used.

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Hamilton won the race on a two-stop strategy, going from the mediums to the hards, then back to the mediums for the final laps. Verstappen was the only driver to pull off a three-stops strategy, the last one to go for the fastest lap on softs. Alonso made the one-stop strategy work and got his first podium since 2014.

Pirelli explained the punctures

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Pirelli is the exclusive tyre manufacturer of the F1 cars. Pirelli’s F1 boss Mario Isola was asked about the tyre blowouts during the race and he said they are investigating the same. Bottas, Lando Norris, Latifi, and Russell had tyre failures, and it caused significant damage to the Finn and the Briton in McLaren. Latifi had to retire his car immediately while Bottas did it later owing to the damage caused during the puncture.

“So there are many elements that we have to consider. The high wear for sure, because all the tyres were completely worn, the impact on the kerbs at high speed because, on almost all laps, they were running on kerbs,” said Isola after the race as reported by Motorsports.

“So there are many elements. We are flying the tyres back to Milan. And as usual, we’ll make an investigation and we try to understand what happened,” he added.

Why is this such a deal for Lando Norris and Valtteri Bottas?

F1 races have seen tyre blowouts before as well but they hardly seem to dictate a race in such a way. Bottas was picked by cameras in the gravel in lap 33 of the race when he was P3 and Mercedes looked like grabbing a double podium. The Finn had not taken a pit-stop until that moment.

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That was followed by Russell on Lap 50 and Latifi on Lap 52 suffering their own tyre issues. Eventually, Lando Norris had to take a last moment pit stop after the tyre failure. He looked good to finish P4 for McLaren. “You don’t expect the tyre to blow up, especially not on the hard tyre. We weren’t even that far into the stint, 20 laps or something, and the tyre should do a lot more than 20 laps,” said the Briton after the race.

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Race Director Michael Masi also added that they will work alongside Pirelli in the following investigation.

Read Also – You Woke Up the ‘Lion’, Toto Wolff Fires a Warning to Red Bull F1 After Lewis Hamilton’s Qatar GP Win

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Rituraj Tripathi

69 articles

Rituraj Tripathi is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. A true lover of speed, he is big fan of Lewis Hamilton and finds a future world champion in Lando Norris. Rituraj eagerly looks forward to the paddock moving to the Circuit de Monaco, and he finds Portier corner as the most exciting part of the track.

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