HindustanTimes Fri,28 Nov 2014
Amid exploding tyres, Nico wins in Silverstone
Silverstone, June 30, 2013
First Published: 19:43 IST(30/6/2013)
Last Updated: 02:33 IST(1/7/2013)

Nico Rosberg won, but his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton took as many plaudits when he recovered from a massive tyre explosion to finish fourth in a thrilling British GP at Silverstone on Sunday.

In a race marred by four tyre failures and two Safety Car interventions, Hamilton lost the lead before fighting back from last place and then led the calls for urgent attention to this year's controversial problems with the fast-failing low-durability Pirelli tyres.

"The safety is the biggest issue, it's unacceptable...," said the 28-year-old 2008 world champion.

"We had that tyre test (in Spain in May) to improve the tyre and to have four blowouts is unacceptable. It's only when someone gets hurt that someone will be doing something about it. I think it's a waste of time talking to the FIA, and if they don't do anything that says a lot about them."

Safety concerns former team-mate Jenson Button of McLaren concurred: "There is nothing to be said —everyone can see what happened."

Button, the 2009 world champion but who has never won his home race in 14 years, said that the tyres issue had to be sorted out.

"We've had five tyres fail over the last few days, so it's a big issue and something that needs to be sorted out.

"It doesn't change how you drive, but of course it's on your mind. Happening at 300 kph, like for Checo (Perez), it's not right. It's not just dangerous for the driver in the car, it's dangerous for all the other cars.

"The cars behind get hit by rubber that has metal in it. It's got to change. I don't think anything needs to be said. We all know the situation."

As the drivers' reflected on the dangers of Pirelli's succession of tyre failures in the aftermath of the race, and the controversy that followed Mercedes' ‘secret' test with Pirelli last month in Spain, the FIA's president Frenchman Jean Todt held emergency meetings with the Italian suppliers.

Rosberg had words of consolation for Hamilton. "With Lewis, I feel sorry for all the British fans," said the German, who celebrated his 28th birthday on Thursday. "It would have been great for Lewis. It's always a massive disappointment, but that's racing. Sebastian (Vettel) stopped, I won't lie, I wasn't disappointed by that one. From then on, it was just a great race."

Rosberg survived huge late pressure from retirement-bound Australian Mark Webber of Red Bull to claim his second win of the season.

It was Mercedes' first victory in Britain since Stirling Moss won in 1955 at Aintree and Rosberg's second in three races and third of his career.

Rosberg, who won earlier in the season in Monaco, said it was a wonderful moment for him to win a race his Finnish father the 1982 world champion Keke never won.

Pirelli called for hearing by FIA
Italian Formula One tyre suppliers Pirelli were asked on Sunday to attend a hastily-arranged meeting of the International Motoring Federation (FIA) Formula One Sporting Working Group in Paris on Wednesday.

The FIA demanded their presence after there were four tyre blowouts during the British Grand Prix provoking outrage from all the drivers including Britain's 2008 world champion Lewis Hamilton. He and his fellow drivers said the four tyre failures were "unacceptable".

There will be little time to sort the problem out as the next race is the German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring on July 7.

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