Contested on a wet track after torrential rain pushed the start back an hour, the Singapore Grand Prix saw all drivers employ a similar tire strategy.
The whole field started on intermediate tyres, the rain tire not having convinced in PR3 or during the grid laps, on a track which took a long time to dry on the main line, or even never outside certain corners.
At the back of the field, George Russell was the first driver to make the bold gamble of slick tires on lap 21, but the Mercedes F1 driver struggled to warm up his medium tires and lost several seconds per lap at the start. assigned work.
It was finally from the 34th lap of the race that the majority of the drivers stopped, most of them to put on the mediums with the exception of Daniel Ricciardo and Valtteri Bottas who opted for the soft ones. Max Verstappen, also left in the medium category, finally changed to the softs five laps later and moved up to seventh place at the finish.
The good operation of the day benefited McLaren F1, Lando Norris and Ricciardo having taken advantage of the second safety car to make their only stop in the race and gain several positions. They had the credit of having kept their intermediate tires for 36 laps, more than anyone, and were rewarded with fourth and fifth places in the event.
Isola very satisfied with the operation of the intermediate tire
The intermediate tire having been used for more than half of the race, the supplier Pirelli was satisfied with the quality of its rubber and then with the race in general.
“Intermediate tires have demonstrated their reliability,” rejoiced Mario Isola, the director of Pirelli in F1.
“Even with quite a lot of wear, they offer excellent performance over the laps as we hoped, in particular thanks to the data collected in qualifying. And as we saw on Saturday, the track took a long time to dry out because of the water that was left on the surface.
“As the conditions became increasingly drier, the race took on a new twist with all riders wearing slicks. The majority of teams opted for the medium tyre, which guaranteed the best balance between performance, warm-up and durability. »
“The riders had to be careful not to deviate from their trajectory so as not to roll in the water and cool the tire which could affect its operation. Formula 1 put on a quality show in front of fans in Singapore this weekend. ”