Sebring International Raceway is not typically hard on tires but it does require teams to keep up with the ever changing track surface.
Historically, as track temperatures go up, the grip reduces. Monday’s test will mark the first time a PC car has been on Continental tires.
The PC Class will use Continental’s ExtremeContact DR tire.
This is the same tire used in Daytona Prototype (DP) action. PC teams are allowed 17 sets of Continental tires up to the race (inclusive of the test). Once the green flag flies, PC teams are allowed an unlimited amount of tires.
It’s too soon to tell whether teams will be able to double stint on a set of tires. More information will be available following the two test days on March 11 and 12.
Colin Braun, PC driver for CORE Autosport:
What’s your experience with Continental tires? - “The Continental tires perform well in the DP Class. Continental has built a tire that has made for some great racing over on the GRAND-AM side and I expect similar performance from the tires over here in the PC Class.
Continental has built a tire that is durable and puts the racing back into the hands of the driver. I have confidence that the tires will work fine on the PC cars.”
What are your expectations for this tire on a PC car? - “I think the tire will perform well. No one has any experience on these tires in the PC cars so we’re all starting from the same place.
It will definitely be a new challenge for all the teams, since there was no winter testing. We’ll know more after the test on Monday and Tuesday. But I think it will be a fun challenge, I’m looking forward to it.”
How do you adjust your setup? - “As far as setup, we will start where we ended in 2012. There’s not much of a bigger change you can make other than tires. That’s where the magic happens.
If we can get the car and tire to work together, and the tire happy on the race track, we’ll be in business. Based on what I know from my GRAND-AM experience, I think we’ll be just fine.”
What are the challenges of this track surface? “Sebring is tough. It’s fairly grippy but very bumpy. The track will change throughout the week so teams have to constantly adjust to make sure the tires are performing to their best with the track conditions.
It’s a moving target but it’s a fun challenge. Gary Davies and the guys at CORE are really good at what they do so I’m sure we will be fine.”
Travis Roffler, director of marketing for Continental Tire:
What tire are you bringing?- “We are bringing the same tire we use in DP competition. The ExtremeContact DR tire is from our ExtremeContact line of tires.
For the past two years Continental tires have helped to provide door-to-door racing is some of the most memorable GRAND-AM races to date. We expect to see similar results in PC competition.”
How will the tires perform? - “We are honored to take part in ALMS competition this year. Based on the performance of the Continental tires on a P2 car during a test late last year at Daytona, coupled with the performance of the tire in DP competition, we have confidence that our tires will give the PC teams the performance they require to go the distance in this year’s 12 Hours of Sebring. We’ve worked extremely hard to provide a tire that will make it fun for the drivers, while giving the fans a great race.
“We recognize that the PC teams have not had a chance to test our product which is why we chose to sponsor the test on Monday and Tuesday. We wanted to give these teams a chance to get comfortable with our product and know that they could race competitively during Saturday’s race."
How are you working with teams? “We pride ourselves on providing superb service at the track, which includes keeping in constant contact with all competing teams. Just like in GRAND-AM, we are working closely with all the PC teams to get feedback that will help us give them the best tire possible as we move forward into 2013.
“Leading into Sebring, we’ve been working with all the teams to answer any questions they may have. We’ve provided them with all the information needed to come to the track Monday with their setup as close to where it needs to be as possible.
We have a lot of experience on our team and I have no doubt that the PC teams will be happy with our service and the tire. We are excited about the opportunity to work with the PC teams and the future of the unified series.”