Pirelli has confirmed that it will use numbers to identify how hard or soft each compound is in 2019. The Italian marque confirmed earlier this year that for next season, the range of compounds brought to the weekend will be called 'hard', 'medium' and 'soft'.
The change comes after Pirelli has introduced a range of compounds over the last number of years, from the super hard to te hyper soft. In a bid to avoid confusion, it has opted to change the way tyres will be identified in 2019.
Each weekend will feature the white-walled 'hard', the yellow-walled 'medium' and the red-walled 'soft'. However, teams and fans will be notified which number on the scale corresponds to the tyre at a particular weekend.
"We call then one, two, three, four, five,” Pirelli motorsport director Mario Isola told RaceFans. “One is the hardest and five is the softest. If we have six then six will be the softest. We’ll inform the teams [using] ‘compound one, compound two, compound three…’ and we’ll tell them not hard, medium, soft that will be white, yellow, red, but we’ll give them the numbers.”
In 2018, Pirelli had seven different slick compounds at its disposal, however the super hard, which was originally planned to be used at Great Britain, was not used throughout the year. Isola hopes that next year, it will cut its range down to five dry weather tyres.
“The test will be important to understand if we can reduce by one compound,” said Isola. “Ideally we want to homologate five but we have six available. Probably one of the six is going to disappear. But we will inform the teams so they know exactly what is going to happen.”
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing