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Chinese GP: Practice team notes - Pirelli

NEWS STORY
12/04/2019

Temperatures were relatively warm compared to previous years, with track temperatures peaking at 33 degrees during the day and ambient temperatures around 20 degrees.

This contributed to the fact that hardly any graining was seen. The warm ambient temperatures helped to keep the tyres within the correct temperature window on the long straights here, which was an important factor.

The performance gap between the hard and medium tyres is around 0.7s seconds, while the gap between the medium and the soft is about 1.1 seconds.

There's some degradation on the soft tyre as expected, around 0.2 seconds per lap so far.

As usual, the circuit was quite green and slippery in the morning but the cars were slightly quicker than the free practice times last year in both sessions: by just over 0.1s in FP2.

The warm conditions are expected to remain for race day, following slightly cooler weather tomorrow, so the data collected today should be quite representative.

One of the drivers who was most impressed by the Shanghai circuit was 1996 world champion Damon Hill, who drove his father's Lotus 49 in a demonstration that finished in the F1 Pirelli Hot Laps garage: part of the celebrations for the 1000th Formula 1 race.

Mario Isola: "The first day of action here in China has been a great beginning to the celebrations for 1000 races. Tyre performance was positive, considering that these are broadly the same nominations as we made last year, but a combination of warmer weather and this year's new compounds meant that we saw nearly no graining. The gap between the medium and the soft is a little bit higher than we expected, and the compounds are well spaced out in terms of performance, which should provide potential for a number of interesting strategies. There's some degradation on the soft tyre, but this too is exactly what we expect and want with the softest tyre available here."

Check out our Friday gallery from Shanghai, here.

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