That driver has no fucking clue how to drive. He's braking all the time, even when full throttle. Try the game for yourself before juding.
"A couple questions though: how realistic is tire wear? Do different pressures and compounds impact tire life."
A good question Rook. I went to SMS' physics guru Doug Arnao to get the answer here. He said:
Tire wear (along with heat) is modeled and is pretty realistic. Safe to say you'll know you've abused your tyres. For pressures, they affect the tyre spring rate, and the across the tread heating, so ultimately will affect life of the tire.
BTW the SMS crew were quite impressed when we created the above screen shot as it captures the real time 3D tire deformation modeling in game. Pretty cool!...