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Pirelli set for first team test in Abu Dhabi 18 Nov 2010

Paul Hembery, Pirelli's motorsport director, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi. November, 2010 Pirelli engineers, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi. November 2010 Pirelli tyres, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi. November 2010 A Pirelli engineer checks tyres, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi. November 2010

Abu Dhabi will play host to Pirelli's debut as Formula One racing's official tyre supplier this week, as the Italian company returns to the sport following a 19-year absence. The 12 teams will test Pirelli’s tyres for the first time from Friday over a two-day session at the Yas Marina Circuit.

Pirelli have already carried out eight private tests at Mugello, Monza, Barcelona, Valencia, Jerez and Paul Ricard as they refined the different tyres that will be supplied to the teams next year. The company used a Toyota TF109 to rack up 7000 kilometres with Nick Heidfeld, Romain Grosjean and Pedro de la Rosa at the wheel.

"We come to these tests with plenty of confidence and satisfaction with our work carried out so far," said Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery. "The tests in Europe have given us all the data we needed at this current phase of development. From tomorrow, the drivers and engineers from every team will give us their opinions and feedback, which are of vital importance for the second phase of testing: a challenge that we are already well-prepared for."

The Abu Dhabi tests will be led by the teams, who have determined the programme they would like to cover. Both the medium and soft compound slick tyres will be used, distinguishable by a coloured stripe on the sidewall. Every team will have eight sets of tyres available, four for day one and four for day two, which adds up to a total supply of 384 Pirelli tyres.

During the test, the teams will be fully supported by Pirelli's engineers and technicians. In particular, each team will have an assigned engineer as well as being able to rely on the back-up of the entire Pirelli contingent, which numbers 30 people in Abu Dhabi.

Ahead of the tests the Pirelli personnel will meet all the teams for a general briefing, during which details of the forthcoming test programme will be discussed, whilst after each day of testing there will also be a debrief between all the teams and Pirelli in order to compare information.

After the Abu Dhabi test, the Italian company will move on to Bahrain in early December for more private testing, in preparation for the first official 2011 tests with the teams next year. Throughout 2011, Pirelli is expected to supply 50,000 tyres to the Formula One paddock.

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