Pirelli and Ferrari conclude 18-inch tyre testing

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Scuderia Ferrari and Pirelli ended their three-day test programme which centred around the brand-new 18-inch tyres that are set to be introduced in the 2022 F1 season.

Beside the revolutionary new aerodynamic configuration, Formula One is set to introduce a brand-new tyre specification next year with the 18-inch tyres due to make their debut in 2022. With the world still grappling with the coronavirus pandemic, the introduction of the new tyres was postponed to 2022.

The postponement meant that Pirelli cancelled its preparation and on-track runs that were scheduled for 2020 and will instead work on the new tyres this year. After requesting a permission from the FIA to increase the number of test days, the Milan-based was granted a 30-day test programme that will see each F1 team getting a three-day test with the 18-inch tyres.

The 30-day test programme began on Monday with Ferrari completing test runs at Jerez. The first day saw Charles Leclerc get behind the wheel of Ferrari’s 2019 F1 challenger, the SF90 while the Monegasque shared driving duties with his new team-mate Carlos Sainz on Tuesday.

The Spaniard brought the test to an end on Wednesday, using Pirelli’s brand-new 18-inch tyres. The Madrid-born notched up a total of 125 laps, trying out all three prototypes – the slick, intermediate and the wet tyres.

The day was divided into two halves with the morning dedicated to the slick tyre testing. During this first part of the day, Sainz racked up 88 laps around the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto track, using the slick tyres while the 26-year-old driver ended the day on the intermediate and wet tyres on the artificially soaked surface.