Pirelli’s 2018 tyre range is a veritable rainbow – but next year, in a bid to make it easier for fans to understand the differences between compounds, there will be just three different coloured tyres at each race. These will always be the same – white, yellow and red – denoting the hard, medium and soft tyre choices respectively at every Grand Prix.
But that doesn’t mean that there will be only three compounds. Instead, the hard, medium and soft compounds will continue to vary to suit the different characteristics of each track. For instance, a red soft for Monaco will differ substantially from a red soft for Silverstone or Suzuka, in that it will be a softer compound.
Before every race next year, Pirelli will reveal which exact compounds form the hard, medium and soft choices for the weekend, with the Italian company saying that the new system makes it easy for the casual fan to tell the difference between the tyres, yet still allows people who want more detail to know which of the specific compounds available are being used.
“We’ve been talking about this with the Teams, FIA and Formula 1 for a while,” said Mario Isola, Head of Car Racing at Pirelli. “The idea behind the change is to make all the tyres more easily recognizable and explainable – especially for television – while still clearly denoting which specific compounds are being used at each race.”