The behaviour of the tyres is influenced by a variety of parameters, which affect their performance and degradation. The car set-up, the aerodynamic balance, grip levels and driving style are all key factors that have an important effect on the tyres.
Take the suspension set-up: the movement of the dampers allows the car to soak up any inconsistencies in the track surface. However, if the suspension is too hard, the tyres have to do most of the work of the dampers, increasing the demands on them and therefore wear levels.
Aerodynamics also play an important part. Balanced downforce between the front and the back ensures an equal force acting on all four wheels and the perfect set-up through corners. If the distribution is not equal, one of the two axles can feel light, generating oversteer and so faster degradation of the rear tyres.
Another factor that can influence tyre degradation is an incorrect set up of the electrohydraulic differential. If too much torque is distributed on one of the two rear wheels, this can cause wheelspin, which again accelerates tyre wear.
In the same way, a driving style that is too aggressive can have an important effect on the tyres. Too many inputs on the steering wheel generates unusual cornering angles, which wear out the tread pattern through the series of small skids that it creates. A clean and progressive driving style avoids taking too much out of the tyres, which reduces wear and enhances durability during a race.
Credit: Pirelli Tyres