Formula 1

Lotus boss disappointed with Pirelli tyre change

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Lotus Team Principal Eric Boullier has spoken of his disappointment at Pirelli’s decision to alter their 2013 tyre compounds amid criticism from other teams and the media.

Last weekend the Spanish Grand Prix was dominated by the topic and a race, which saw 82 pit stops, and a four-stop-strategy winning was the final straw for many fans and teams alike.

On Tuesday Pirelli confirmed they would be altering the construction of the tyres from the Canadian Grand Prix, reverting to a 2012 specification design although keeping the 2013 compounds. The move will decrease the amount of degradation through reducing the amount of heat build-up in the tyre.

However not all are happy, notably Lotus who have made huge gains this year through being the best team to look after Pirelli’s fragile tyres, and speaking about the decision team boss Eric Boullier hit back at the criticism from fellow top teams Red Bull and Mercedes.

"Unlike Red Bull," Boullier told France's Canal Plus, "who has a policy of developing the car based solely on aerodynamics; we are among the teams like Ferrari, who took into account the Pirelli factor when designing the car.

"So we're actually a little disappointed by this change," he admitted.

"I don't know a lot of other sports where, let's say in football, they decide to increase the size of the goals in the middle of a season," said Boullier.

Another man disappointed is Pirelli’s test driver Jaime Alguersuari, who said there is nothing “fundamentally wrong with the tyres” and claimed the problems some teams and drivers are having are due to them “not understanding the tyres.”

"I don't see the drama," the Spaniard told the sports daily AS.

"When Vettel was winning in 2011 it was like this, but when things go well, you don't complain. What is happening now is that a few understand the tyres while others do not.

"So there is Alonso with Ferrari, and also Raikkonen and Lotus (who understand).

"It happened to me in 2011," former Toro Rosso driver Alguersuari continued. "I had a horrible start to the year, but from mid-season we began to understand the behaviour of the compounds."


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