Formula 1’s official tyre supplier Pirelli believes that Nico Rosberg’s spectacular tyre blowout during Friday’s second practice session at the Belgian Grand Prix was likely to have been caused by a debris cut.
The company’s team of engineers spent the final hours of Friday examining the leftovers of Rosberg’s damaged tyre – as well as a number of other tyre sets used during both Friday practice sessions – but found no evidence for any concerns with its tyres.
Rosberg was running quickest overall during the practice session when he suffered a spectacular tyre blowout on the approach to the high-speed Blanchimont left-hander in the final sector of the lap. Pure luck kept him away from the barriers and a major accident, and the shaken German later returned to the pits after abandoning his car.
“There was no warning at all,” Rosberg later recalled.
“It’s not a nice experience, at 300 kilometres per hour, to suddenly just lose control. There’s a lot of damage to the car as well, but luckily I didn’t hit the wall or anything.”
Sources from Pirelli have suggested that the cut to Rosberg’s tyre came from an undetermined external source and that its engineers would work overnight to try and identify a possible cause.
Images via FOM and XPB Images