Formula 1 - Ferrari slams Red Bull over tyres

Ferrari has hit out at rival Red Bull's criticisms of the current tyres in Formula 1, saying it does not understand why it should feel 'ashamed' for winning races with aggressive four-stop strategies.

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Formula 1 - Ferrari slams Red Bull over tyres
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Ferrari and Red Bull are at odds over the new Pirelli tyres (Reuters)

Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz attacked the state of F1 after the Spanish Grand Prix, claiming the sport was no longer about racing but instead was simply about tyre preservation.

Pirelli itself has reacted to the high number of pitstops in Spain, plus the spate of bizarre rear tyre failures, by choosing to tweak the structure of the tyres from the Canadian Grand Prix.

Less than 24 hours after Lotus boss Eric Boullier vented his frustration at Pirelli's decision to change the tyres mid-season, Ferrari has now also voiced it feelings on the matter, and says it is baffled as to why teams are upset at there being four-stop races.

Fernando Alonso's victory in Spain last weekend was helped by the fact that his outfit was convinced from as early as Friday that the best strategy for the race was a four-stop.

Title rival Sebastian Vettel's race floundered when Red Bull failed to make a three-stop work and had to slot in an extra change of tyres.

In a return of the 'Horse Whisperer' column that was published on the Ferrari website on Friday, the team wrote: "It seems one must almost feel ashamed for choosing a strategy that, as always for that matter, is aimed at getting the most out of the package one has available.

"On top of that, if this choice emerges right from the Friday, because all the simulations are unanimous in selecting it, then why on earth should one feel embarrassed when compared to those who have gone for a different choice, only to regret it during the race itself?"

Ferrari reiterated the point that Red Bull's criticisms about the tyre strategies in Spain come just two years after Sebastian Vettel triumphed at Barcelona with a four-stop strategy.

"These are difficult times for people with poor memories," said the column. "Maybe it's because of the huge amount of information available today that people are too quick to talk, forgetting things that happened pretty much in the recent past.

"Or maybe the brain cells that control memory only operate selectively, depending on the results achieved on track by their owners.

"A classic example of this is the current saga regarding the number of pitstops.

"Voices have been raised to underline the fact that various teams, some of whom got to the podium and others who were quite a way off, made four pitstops in the recent Spanish Grand Prix, making the race hard to follow.

"It's a shame that these worthy souls kept quiet two years ago when, at the very same Catalunya Circuit and on the Istanbul track, five of the six drivers who got to those two podiums made exactly the same number of pitstops as did Alonso and Massa last Sunday in the Spanish Grand Prix."

It added: "In fact, there's nothing new about winning a race making so many pitstops, even discounting those where it was down to changeable weather.

"One only has to look back to 2004, when Michael Schumacher won the French Grand Prix thanks to what was a three stop strategy, later changed to a four stopper.

"That was the key which allowed the multiple champion's F2004 to get ahead of the then Renault driver, Fernando Alonso, who made three stops.

"And on that day and we remember it well, our strategy and the tyre supplier were showered with praise for allowing us to get the most out of the car."

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