Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli says Istanbul Park is not as severe on rubber as some circuits visited by the championship and expects a similar situation to Portimao.
Istanbul Park is set to host its first Formula 1 race since 2011, when Pirelli was in the first months of its role as sole tyre supplier, as part of a revised calendar heavily affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Istanbul Park features a handful of long-radius and high-speed corners, most notably Turn 8, a four-apex left-hander that is set to be taken at full-throttle.
The track, as with Portimao, has been resurfaced in recent months in anticipation of Formula 1’s visit.
Pirelli will bring its three hardest tyre compounds – the C1s, C2s and C3s – but is not expecting as severe a challenge as posed at some venues.
“Talking about the severity of the circuit we made some simulations and we have an idea, obviously the severity of Turn 8 is something we know, but we have good systems and metrics to compare circuits,” said Pirelli chief Mario Isola.
“We made a comparison between Istanbul and some other high severity circuits, in general Istanbul is less severe than for example Spa and Silverstone, so it does not have a higher severity.
“The tarmac is new, actually we went recently and we measured the asphalt, it is quite smooth, very new.
“If I have to give an idea on the behaviour that I am expecting in Istanbul it is probably quite in line with what we had in Portimao.
“The macro-roughness is lower than Portimao and the micro [roughness] is quite low, and it was quite low for both, so my idea but maybe I’m wrong, but based on the experience is that we can find a situation that we can compare to Portimao.”