Boullier frustrated by tyre modifications
17 May 2013 – Lotus team boss Eric Boullier has expressed dissatisfaction at Pirelli's decision to modify its slick tyre compounds from the Canadian Grand Prix onwards, with the Italian manufacturer responding to criticism from various teams and drivers.
During the outlining of its plans earlier in the week, Pirelli vowed to reduce the number of pit-stops per driver with the overhaul of its tyres, something Boullier believes is extremely unfair given the fact that all 12 outfits have to cope with the same situation.
"There aren’t many sports where there are such fundamental changes to an essential ingredient part-way through a season," Boullier said of the debate. "Just imagine for a moment that, because a football team can’t run as fast as its opponent, the dimensions of the pitch are changed at half time! That there are changes to come can be seen as somewhat frustrating, and I hope they are not too extreme.
"It’s clear that Pirelli have found themselves in a difficult situation and under pressure from different quarters. Last year, when we were designing our 2013 car, each team received information from Pirelli and everyone did the best job they could to develop a chassis which would make best use of the tyre characteristics. We even ran with some experimental 2013 tyres at the end of last season, to assist us in confirming our development paths."
Boullier says certain teams and drivers have simply been able to adapt to the new compounds more efficiently, far from a sufficient reason to make major tweaks.
"As with every season, some teams do a better job than others with their designs, and some drivers are more adaptable than others to the changes of both car and tyre," Boullier went on to explain. "It is frustrating when you’ve developed a car from a set of tyre specifications which are available to everyone – for tyres that are the same for everyone – to then be told that they are being changed mid-season.
"That said, we have a team of talented designers and engineers who will be working twice as hard to ensure we adapt to these changes in the most competitive manner."