The more durable and updated construction of the Pirelli F1 tyres, a result of R&D for 2024, was introduced earlier than planned for the British GP weekend to accommodate increasing downforce levels without the need to increase minimum pressures.
The paddock generally agreed that the change did not significantly alter the hierarchy, however, Alonso believes otherwise.
“Our performance gap from McLaren is merely a tenth, so it’s not as dire as the outcome suggests,” Alonso commented. “Still, we undoubtedly need to make improvements. We’ve been experiencing a performance regression in recent races, while other teams are progressing.”
He pointed out, “Interestingly, since the new Pirelli tyres were introduced in Silverstone, certain teams have been struggling more than others, while some are seemingly happier with their vehicles.”
“Checo [Perez] is finding it hard to break into the top 10. I noticed in Silverstone that Max [Verstappen] was only three seconds ahead of Lando [Norris]. This seems slightly unusual since the Silverstone race.”
When questioned whether his opinions on the tyres were driven by the stopwatch readings or his personal feeling in the car, Alonso replied: “Both. The car does feel different with the new tyres. However, maintaining neutrality is sometimes difficult.”
Photo by: Michael Potts / F1 Flow Images – Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23
“Undeniably, we haven’t been able to make significant advancements with our car compared to our primary competitors. Each team now receives new components every Thursday. This makes it fairly easy to identify which teams are investing more into enhancements for the grand prix.”
“But looking back at Red Bull, after consistently ranking first and second in every practice, qualifying, and race, I think it’s clear that their performance has dropped since Silverstone.”
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Securing the ninth position at Silverstone, the Spanish racer ranked eighth fastest in Budapest on Saturday, marking the 20th anniversary of his inaugural grand prix victory with Renault.
Speaking to Autosport about his afternoon, Alonso stated: “I was satisfied with the car. We made several adjustments heading into the qualifiers, and I felt confident and speedy.”
“The average gap to pole position has been around four or five-tenths, which is exactly what we observed today. Therefore, it was a normal qualifying round for us.”
“However, we were outranked by seven cars. So, even though it was a typical qualifying for us, some of our key competitors had an exceptionally good session. Consequently, the results didn’t exactly paint a promising picture for our Saturday.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Pirelli F1 tyres
What are Fernando Alonso’s views on the new Pirelli F1 tyres?
Fernando Alonso believes the new Pirelli F1 tyres have negatively impacted the performance of certain teams, including Aston Martin and Red Bull.
What changes did Pirelli make to the F1 tyres?
The new Pirelli F1 tyres have a more robust construction, which is a result of R&D planned for 2024. These tyres were introduced early to handle increasing downforce levels without needing to raise minimum pressures.
How has the performance of Red Bull changed according to Alonso?
Alonso states that Red Bull’s performance has deteriorated since the introduction of the new Pirelli tyres. They have gone from regularly securing the first two positions in races and qualifying to struggling to reach pole position.
What were Alonso’s personal experiences with the new Pirelli tyres?
Alonso mentions that the new tyres make the car feel different. He also points out that since their introduction, his team hasn’t made significant advancements compared to the primary competitors.
How did Alonso perform in the recent races at Silverstone and Budapest?
Alonso secured the ninth position at Silverstone and was the eighth fastest in Budapest. This marked the 20th anniversary of his first-ever Grand Prix victory with Renault. Despite these finishes, Alonso believes more improvements are needed.