The new tires will attempt to spice up the show for fans.
Pirelli has conducted its first test of the new 2017 spec Formula 1 tires. The test was conducted with the help of four-time world champion and Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari's own Fiorano test track. The new tire rules for 2017 mandate that Pirelli produce tires that are wider and faster. The most notable change to the untrained eye will be to the rear tires, which are substantially wider than in previous years. In fact, tires in Formula 1 haven't been this wide since the 1990s.
The testing was conducted in order to collect data on how the 25% increase in tire width affects the performance, wear and behavior of the rubber. The move to wider tires, specifically in the rear, has been lauded by many F1 fans. Recently, the sport has been lambasted for boring races, overbearing rules and lack of real racing. So in order to create a more exciting spectacle for fans, Pirelli and Formula 1 management went back to the 1990s for inspiration. The '90s was the last time that Formula 1 used wide tires and less aero. And to many fans, that era was the last time that F1 was true to itself. Yes, the goal is now to make racing great again.
The tire testing comes as part of wider, sweeping changes for the 2017 season. The majority of other changes revolve around loosening of aerodynamic restrictions and letting drivers drive. All of these changes will reportedly make cars up to five seconds a lap quicker on most circuits. Anything that makes the cars faster and the racing more exciting is good in our book. Here's to 2017!