F1: Top teams resisting tire blanket ban

(GMM) Top teams are resisting a push to see tire blankets banned in Formula 1.

The sport is keen to move away from the costly and energy-hungry practice of pre-heating tires, with the item to be discussed at the F1 Commission in London on Wednesday.

But some teams are arguing that, with orders already placed for tire blankets in 2022, drivers will struggle to get heat into their rubber without them – especially with the low-profile tires set to debut in 2022.

Auto Motor und Sport, however, claims that it is mainly the big teams arguing to keep the blankets.

“In qualifying, the cars sometimes wait several minutes at the pit exit to get a good position on the track,” an unnamed team manager from a smaller team is quoted as saying.

“The tires cool down completely, and somehow it still works.”

It is believed a compromise will be discussed at the F1 Commission which would see blankets phased out from 2022 to 2024. Next year, for instance, the allowance of 40 blankets per team would be slashed to 20.

Not just that, maximum tire heating is expected to be reduced from 90 to 70 degrees C, decreasing further to 50C in 2023 before a full ban in 2024.