Charles Leclerc completed the first laps in the F1 car this season by testing 18-inch tyres for Pirelli in Jerez, according to a short press release from an Italian tyre manufacturer who is preparing to introduce a new tyre size in 2021.
After years of planning, Pirelli will finally move to 18-inch Formula One tyres to bring technology closer to road cars, with the expected switchover occurring in 2021, with Formula 2 moving to this dimension already this year.
The Italian tyre manufacturer confirmed that all ten teams will participate in testing 18-inch tyres on modified cars this year, unlike last year when only Mercedes, Renault and McLaren participated in these tests.
The first test this year was done by Leclerc and Ferrari in warm Jerez, Spain, where yesterday afternoon the air temperature was 20 degrees Celsius and the track temperature was 25 degrees.
But in the morning the conditions were not good enough because of the fog, so Leclerc only made 33 laps by 1pm and he didn’t completed a single lap before 11am.
In total, Leclerc drove 130 laps in a modified Ferrari SF90, three days before the start of pre-season testing in Barcelona.
2020 F1 18-INCH TYRE TEST SCHEDULE
|March 5||Fiorano||Ferrari (wet tyres)|
|May 12||Barcelona||Red Bull, Alfa Romeo, Renault|
|May 13||Barcelona||Red Bull, Alfa Romeo|
|May 26||Paul Ricard||Red Bull (wet tyres)|
|May 27||Paul Ricard||Red Bull (wet tyres)|
|July 7||Red Bull Ring||AlphaTauri|
|July 8||Red Bull Ring||AlphaTauri|
|July 21||Silverstone||Racing Point, Williams, McLaren|
|July 22||Silverstone||Racing Point, Williams|
|September 8||Paul Ricard||McLaren|
|September 9||Paul Ricard||Mercedes, Ferrari|
|September 10||Paul Ricard||Mercedes (wet tyres)|
|September 11||Paul Ricard||Mercedes (wet tyres)|
Job done @circuitodejerez! @ScuderiaFerrari driver @Charles_Leclerc has just concluded his first-ever test of the new @F1 Pirelli #Fit4F1 18-inch tyres for 2021 with a total of 130 laps! Well done, Charles! pic.twitter.com/ejQQINsrUS
— Pirelli Motorsport (@pirellisport) February 8, 2020