Formula One is not short of ideas, in fact every man and his dog in the paddock has an opinion on how the sport can reinvigorate itself. The problem is few can agree on any single measure.
Earlier this year Force India came up with a radical proposal to allow the teams to choose two dry compound tyres from the Pirelli range, which they would run for each GP weekend, and this provided some hope that the deck may occasionally be shuffled. Pirelli recently admitted there is a divergence in the way the teams are developing their cars to utilize the tyres, so the hope that the predictable may become less orchestrated gained momentum.
Yet the final version of the Force India proposal as adopted by the FIA has become so convoluted with the Pirelli mandated three sets of tyres which must be saved/used at certain points during the weekend, that we will regularly see teams now having three compounds available for each event and during the race.
Jenson Button believes this new regulation will change little. “Everyone will use the same tyres. Unless they have a massive issue with one tyre, everyone will use the same tyres. They have limited it.
“If it was completely open and you could use any of the tyres available, then you might have the possibility of someone running something a bit different, a bit crazy. But you’re limited to three different tyres and everyone will be on exactly the same. After the first race, nobody will talk about it any more.”
Button is right, because Pirelli have been allowed to control too many of the options the team have available to them. Instead of allowing the teams to select two compounds from the available five, the FIA have allowed Pirelli to restrict the options to just three of the five dry compounds.
The teams should opt for the softest two of the Pirelli three options available, knowing the Italian tyre manufacturer will ensure one of their race sets of tyres is hard enough to complete at least 50% of the race. Pirelli will do this to ensure they are not again the but of criticism for providing tyres too soft to even complete a third race distance.