The Red Bull Ring in Austria is a short and sharp rollercoaster with just 10 corners and constant elevation changes. Pirelli brings the three softest tyres in the range: C3 as the P Zero White hard, C4 as the P Zero Yellow medium, and C5 as the P Zero Red soft.
Last year there were two races at the Red Bull Ring held back-to-back: this weekend is the same tyre nomination as the second race there, designed to help put on a show by increasing degradation and creating more overtaking opportunities. On that occasion, the winning strategy was a two-stopper: one opening stint on the medium, followed by two hard tyre stints. Of course, the compounds and structures are different this year.
Austria is also home to the second sprint weekend of the season, after Imola. As a reminder, rather than having 13 sets of tyres for a conventional weekend, there will be just 12 sets. These consist of two sets of hard, four sets of medium, and six sets of soft. In addition, the teams will have up to six sets of Cinturato Green intermediates and three sets of Cinturato Blue full wets available in case of wet weather – which is very possible in the Styrian hills.
Alpine, McLaren, Red Bull and Williams will stay on after the Austrian Grand Prix as part of Pirelli's testing programme for next year's tyres. McLaren and Williams will test for two days, with the other two teams putting in one day each.
Mario Isola: "The asphalt at the Red Bull Ring offers reasonably low grip on a low-severity circuit, which makes it possible to bring the softest tyres in the range. This helps us in putting the focus on entertainment, at a venue that has often delivered exciting races in the past, thanks to a busy and compact lap that's essentially a series of short corners.
"Traction and especially braking are key here: with a particular risk of lock-ups in some of the tricky downhill braking areas. Maintaining the performance of the rear tyres throughout the lap is also vital to ensure adequate traction. Our tyre nomination makes a variety of different potential strategies possible."