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F1 News: Teams Have Raised Las Vegas GP Concerns

"If the track is down in single figures, that's often a region where you go winter testing."

Formula 1 teams are concerned about getting their Pirelli tires to the right temperature since a cold Las Vegas Grand Prix is expected to drop below ten degrees Celsius in November. 

Records indicate that the temperature in mid-November could easily drop down to five degrees in the night. This is a concern for many teams as Friday's qualifying would start at midnight Nevada time, while Saturday's race would start at 10 PM. The event could go well past midnight if a race restart is ordered or, a red flag event comes up.

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Cold tires could pose a serious threat to the F1 cars from going flat out. especially at the start of qualifying laps. Mercedes trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin told that it is too early to exactly predict how the tires are going to perform. He said:

"It'll just depend on exactly how cold it is.

"Because if the track is down in single figures, that's often a region where you go winter testing.

"You do a run, it's very difficult for the tyres to either get them switched on, or there may be graining and things. And then sometimes you just wait until it warms up a bit. So actually having to sort of race and qualifying in those conditions, it will be interesting.

"You just try and identify the risks with the new circuit, work out what your contingencies will be, whether you need any sort of specific car spec to deal with that. And we're going through that at the moment.

"But as I said, if it's at the very cold end of predictions, it's difficult to know how the tyres are going to work."


AlphaTauri chief race engineer Jonathan Eddolls spoke on similar lines, comparing the challenging conditions to their winter tests. He added:

"The temperatures are going to be probably one of the biggest challenges.

"I think we're expecting circa 10C of ambient, so very much like the winter test.

"In many years, we've done winter tests in Barcelona at those sorts of temperatures. So it's not going to be completely new to us.

"But definitely it's quite a step away in terms of where we're going to be operating the current tyres to what we're used to in a normal season."

On the contrary, Haas director of engineering Ayao Komatsu prefers colder weather but, mentions the challenges that could come up due to the absence of high-end tools. He revealed:

"It's a very different temperature window, so we've got to get the tyres to work," he said. "But if I had to choose hot or cold, I'd choose cold conditions at this minute! So hopefully, we can get it to work.

"I think it'll be a big challenge for us, especially our team with the tools we've got in terms of pre-event simulation, more limited compared with let's say Mercedes."

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