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Isola: Two mandatory pitstops not the solution

Formula 1 should be wary of forcing drivers to make more pitstops as part of future efforts to make races more exciting, according to tyre supplier Pirelli’s motor racing chief Mario Isola.

The idea of having two mandatory pitstops in a grand prix, rather than just one at present, has been around for some years and remains under discussion as the sport plans major rules revamp after 2020.

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“There was a lot of talk about imposing two stops by regulation,” Isola told Reuters in an interview at the Autosport Show.

“I’m not sure that is the right solution because you have the risk of all the cars stopping on the same lap,” added the Italian.

The suggestion was discussed last year, but nothing was changed for 2019, as the sport looked at how to encourage more varied team strategies amid concern about the number of one-stop races.

Isola said removing the obligation for the top 10 to start the race on tyres used in the second phase of qualifying was also still ‘on the table’.

Pirelli have simplified their colour-coded range of tyres for 2019 from seven to three (soft, medium and hard), making it easier for the casual fan to know what is being used.

Isola said the tyres should also be more consistent, allowing drivers to push slightly harder, “We want to be a bit more conservative because if we have one-stop races anyway, at this point it’s much better that we give drivers a bit more consistent tyres and they can push more and maybe we have a better show on track.”

He warned, however, that making tyres less susceptible to over-heating remained a problem, “We made some improvement on the product itself, we’ve different compounds in order to reduce the over-heating. But the over-heating is not avoidable when you follow another car and you lose a lot of downforce.”

Big Question: Should two pitstops be mandatory in F1?