Hamilton hits out at tyre rule 'taking track time away from fans'


Lewis Hamilton was unimpressed with F1's 'Alternative Tyre Allocation' rule after the opening day of running in Hungary, insisting the format is depriving drivers and fans of track time.

The system was put together by F1 and Pirelli to help the sport's sustainability efforts by reducing the number tyres the Italian company hauls to every race.

For this weekend's trial, each driver has received 11 sets of tyres for the entire event - 3 sets of the Hard tyre, 4 sets of Mediums, and 4 sets of the Soft rubber – instead of the 13 sets normally available on a race weekend.

The reduced allocation means that each compound must be used sparingly.

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"We only had one tyre that we were going to use this session so it’s not really a great format this change they made for this weekend," commented a frustrated Hamilton.

"It just means we get less running, so not ideal."

The Briton suggested that Pirelli should perhaps target reducing its inventory of wet tyres, many of which go to waste after a race weekend.

"There’s a lot of wet tyres that I think they throw away after every weekend, like, a lot. Maybe they should look at something like that rather than taking time on track away from the fans."

During FP2, Mercedes focused on understanding the Medium tyre and on its long run pace, which left Hamilton and teammate George Russell a lowly P16 and P20 at the end of the session.

The seven-time world champion was heard complaining to his team about a lack of grip.

"It wasn't feeling good at all," Hamilton admitted. "It felt like the car at its worst, but we will work on the set-up overnight.

"Last year, it felt terrible at the beginning and then we turned it around with some set-up changes.
So we will work on that and hopefully we will feel better."

Russell suggested that Mercedes' decision to run exclusively on used Mediums meant that lap times were not a true representation of their car's pace.

"We're just focused on trying to improve and we know we tend to improve as the weekend progress, which is the right way around," he said.

"We learned a few interesting things even in that one dry session. We're struggling with a bit of overall grip and the tyres didn't feel like they were in the right window on both low fuel and high fuel.

"We need to understand why that was, but these are difficult things to assess during a session. We will work on that overnight."

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