LONDON, May 18, 2012 (AFP) - Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz this week joined the list of critics who believe that Pirelli's high-wear tyres are bad
for the sport - and said that they were turning the competition into a lottery.
Seven-time champion Michael Schumacher has lambasted the unforgiving tyres and warned that they were preventing the drivers from showing their best
ability and total commitment.
Five different drivers have won the opening five races this year, the most open start to a season since 1983.
Mateschitz said he understood that the unpredictability was good for the fans, but argued that it had taken the purity out of the sport. He said none of the teams had yet demonstrated they understood how the Pirelli tyres worked.
Last Sunday's Pastor Maldonado took full advantage of this situation to become the first Venezuelan to win a Grand Prix when he drove Williams to
victory in Spain.
But Mateschitz said: "F1 is more exciting and more unpredictable than ever before and, obviously, caused by the rule changes before the season, the top
teams moved closer together.
"I always had confidence in the potential of our RB8 and I still have, no doubt. But everyone has to learn F1 again. It has become a kind of lottery to
find out the window in which a tyre works.
"And I do not believe this just happens on purpose to create more overtaking and tension in the races. I suppose no one really understands these
He admitted he had been surprised by the pace of the Lotus team this year, too, but suggested that they, like their rivals, would not have to maintain
their form in the development war that lies ahead as the season unfolds.
"Lotus has been the biggest surprise of all," he said. "I think Kimi (Raikkonen) indeed had the pace to win in Bahrain. The question is how long
Lotus will be capable to keep the pace of development work the other major outfits will show?
"If they can keep up with them they will be a force to be reckoned with."