Pirelli has released the schedule for the new 2014 in season testing plan, which will see each of the F1 teams given a day to test updates and new products to avoid a repeat of the problems, failures and disagreements of last season.
Things reached a head last May when Mercedes and Pirelli conducted a test, which the other teams were not informed about, after the Spanish Grand Prix. This led to both parties appearing in front of the FIA’s International Tribunal.
The panel of independent judges found blame to be equally shared between Pirelli, Mercedes and the FIA. Pirelli felt badly let down by the sport which had not made adequate provision for them to test with current cars. Certainly in comparison with former tyre suppliers like Bridgestone and Michelin, this kind of testing was negligible. Pirelli was forced to use a two year old Lotus car and found it insufficient for its needs. But none of the teams wanted to let the others test partly on cost grounds and also on grounds of lack of trust. This situation has now been resolved.
It was decided to provide Pirelli with the chance to properly evaluate tyres and their request for this test programme was enshrined in their new deal with F1 and in the Sporting Regulations. This programme replaces the Young Driver test and also the straightline aero tests which were formerly in the regulations.
The test programme is as follows:
Bahrain test (8-9 April)
Day2 MERCEDES and WILLIAMS
Barcelona test (13-14 May)
Day1 SAUBER and TORO ROSSO
Day2 McLAREN and FORCE INDIA
Silverstone test (8-9 July)
Day1 FERRARI and LOTUS
Day2 RED BULL and MARUSSIA
Abi Dhabi test
Pirelli will supply all the teams with prototype tyres in preparation for the 2015 season.