Scuderia Ferrari performed an intensive tyre testing programme with Pirelli, helping the Milan-based tyre supplier to finesse its 2022 intermediate and full wet tyres at Paul Ricard.
For the 2022 F1 season, the sport is due to introduce new technical regulations along with a move to 18-inch tyres. The testing of the brand-new Pirelli tyrs began in 2019, but the coronavirus pandemic forced the sport to push back its plans to 2022.
After working with the FIA together, the Italian tyre supplier came up with an extensive testing schedule for 2021 that is set to help the sport get prepared to the new tyres for the forthcoming season.
For this week, Mercedes was due to conduct tyre testing, helping Pirelli to finesse its new 18-inch products. However, the Brackley-based outfit pulled out of the tyre test despite a $400,000 credit which indicates that the team is close to the 2021 budget cap total of $145m.
Mercedes has already run two days on the 2022 slick tyres at Imola in April, and is scheduled to take part in a one-day dry rubber test at Budapest following the Hungarian Grand Prix.
That’s it for @ScuderiaFerrari driver @Carlossainz55 and the latest 2022 #Fit4F1 18-inch wet tyre test at @PaulRicardTrack. A total of 167 laps completed today: 75 on intermediates and 92 on full wets. @fia @F1 pic.twitter.com/SzN0ofUPtU— Pirelli Motorsport (@pirellisport) May 26, 2021
On Tuesday, just two days after the Monaco Grand Prix, Charles Leclerc was behind the wheel of Ferrari's mule F1 car with the Monegasque notching up a total of 83 laps on the 2022 intermediate before racking up a further 58 laps on the full wet tyres in the afternoon.
On Wednesday, the 23-year-old handed his car over to his new team mate, Carlos Sainz. After securing his first podium finish for the Scuderia at Monte Carlo, the Spaniard worked on the intermediate tyres in the morning before switching his attention to the full wet tyres in the afternoon's session.
Sainz completed more than a French Grand Prix distance in the morning with racking up a total of 75 laps on the 2022 intermediate tyres. The test programme centred around the wet weather tyres in the afternoon on which the Spaniard notched up a total of 92 laps with the entire lap tally equalling to 167 laps.
The 2022 18-inch tyre test programme is scheduled to continue at Spielberg where the AlphaTauri team will work with Pirelli on 6-7 July.