Pirelli unveil 2013 tyre range
Pirelli have unveiled a new range of tyres which they are convinced will improve the show in Formula One.
Ahead of their third season in the sport, and with talks ongoing over a new deal, Pirelli say the changes introduced will result in at least two pit stops being required per car at every grand prix.
The Italian manufacturer have improved performance, with the tyres faster by up to half a second per lap and with the time gap between compounds widened to at least 0.5secs.
The result should be an increase overtaking opportunities and enhanced race strategies.
"The goal is to continuously set new challenges for the drivers and to ensure all the teams start the new season on a level playing field when it comes to the tyres," Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery said.
"Through accumulating more information with each grand prix last year the teams eventually fully understood the tyres, after a spectacular start with seven winners in the first seven races.
"The result at the end of the year were races with less competition, and sometimes only one pit stop.
"This phenomenon was also observed in 2011, disappointing many fans and prompting some of the teams to ask us to continue developing our tyres further this year, in order to provide a fresh challenge with something different.
"Our 2013 range of tyres mixes up the tyres once more, to help overtaking, and to ensure two to three pit stops per race."
Pirelli's calculations are based on thousands of computer simulations using sophisticated predictive software.
Pirelli also covered several thousand kilometres in five private tests at Jerez, Spa, Barcelona and Paul Ricard, with Jaime Alguersuari and Lucas di Grassi at the wheel.
Discussing Pirelli's potential new contract, president and chief executive Marco Tronchetti Provera said: "We are obviously willing to continue this adventure.
"The teams are satisfied and the partnership we have with F1 is a successful one, a win-win co-operation.
"That is why I'm confident we will have a new agreement from next year, but there is nothing new for the time being."
The most visible change to the tyres sees the hard compound bearing orange markings compared to the silver of the last two years.
Pirelli, meanwhile, have named former Ferrari driver Jean Alesi as their brand ambassador.