Pirelli chief Mario Isola believes some teams may try and use the Soft compound for Formula 1’s inaugural Sprint on Saturday.
Sprint will last 17 laps and unlike the grand prix will feature no mandatory pit stop, with teams having a free choice of starting compound.
Silverstone places a high stress on tyres, with the situation potentially accentuated by the current high temperatures in Britain, but Isola believes some drivers may still adopt an aggressive strategy.
Pirelli has nominated the C1, C2 and C3 compounds for this weekend’s event but at last year’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, which was held at Silverstone, it brought the C2, C3 and C4s.
Several drivers were able to run lengthy stints on the C3 tyres, with Kimi Raikkonen running a 25-lap spell in the race on that compound, which is in effect the Soft tyre this weekend.
“It is difficult to predict if teams will use just Mediums or also the Soft,” said Isola.
“If you look back at the second Silverstone race last year where the Soft compound we have this week was the Medium, we have some drivers that were able to run a stint longer than the Sprint on the Soft without the high degradation.
“We had for example Esteban Ocon, Sebastian Vettel, Charles Leclerc, Lance Stroll, Raikkonen, Antonio Giovinazzi – they all ran long stints on the C3 compound.
“I believe that considering last year we had similar conditions in terms of temperature it is a good indication of what they can choose.”
Isola added that “before coming I was more or less convinced that everybody was going to try and run Sprint on the Mediums, but now I am not so sure.
“I think we will see a mix of Soft and Medium compound for the Sprint.
“If it happens it is obviously very interesting as with the new format everyone was thinking it would be the same compound for everybody, but maybe not.”