As what seems to be the trend of late in an effort to compensate for the lack of real Formula 1 racing, many a virtual event has been organised online offering sim racing, often with celebrities and real F1 drivers.
One such event earlier this week included an Italian virtual Grand Prix coined “Race Against the Virus”, organised by Italian sports media outlets.
During the race, Pirelli motorsport boss Mario Isola took the opportunity to exchange a few words with Matteo Bobbi and Marcello Puglisi, commentators of the event.
“Even in these difficult times we continue to work from home and we are making assumptions about the F1 calendar and when the World Championship will start again.” said Isola,
“Besides working a lot, I also do some voluntary work and I see that you are collecting money for the Italian Red Cross and this is very important and hopefully there are other donations….”
The virtual race was used as a means to generate donations to Italian charitable organisations such as the Red Cross, attracting famous names such as Mario Isola to join in the event.
“In general I’m not a big fan of virtual races,” admits Isola,
“I’ve looked at Bahrain but clearly it’s not really the same thing. But it is certainly a great initiative because it is a way to keep fans closer to the world of Formula 1”
When asked about the impact of the corona virus on the Championship, particularly with regard to Pirelli, the Italian had this to say:
“To date it is very difficult to work on a calendar where there are so many countries that are all more or less affected by the virus. It’s a difficult calendar to put together because there are so many events that have been postponed,
“At the moment we are talking about the middle or end of June so we are talking about a very compressed championship,
“There are many elements to analyze well, both in terms of the materials that must be moved from one part of the globe to another, and in terms of rights and promoters,
“At the moment it is hoped between the middle and the end of April to have a draft calendar to start working on”.
The Italian stressed how important it was to try and get plans underway as soon as possible.
“We have been willing to be more flexible in the choice of tyres. At the same time, however, as is well known, there has been a postponement of the new rules from 2021 to 2022 with the consequent postponement of the 18 inch tyres.
“This is something we have to analyse well because we had already abandoned development on 13 inch tyres in the middle of last year in view of the changeover”. This means that Pirelli is very likely to have to switch back to development of the 13 inch compatible tyres, but require a firm time frame to organise it.
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