PICKERINGTON, Ohio (Dec. 11, 2003) -- AMA Pro Racing, in concert with teams, riders, Daytona International Speedway (DIS) officials and representatives from the major tire manufacturers will work together in assessing the situation resulting from...
PICKERINGTON, Ohio (Dec. 11, 2003) -- AMA Pro Racing, in concert with teams, riders, Daytona International Speedway (DIS) officials and representatives from the major tire manufacturers will work together in assessing the situation resulting from two tire-failure related crashes that occurred while tire testing at Daytona International Speedway.
Much was learned from the just-concluded tests at the speedway, but two dramatic incidents have forced all involved to carefully re-evaluate the situation. Yamaha's Jason DiSalvo walked away from a crash on Tuesday, day two of the Dunlop-hosted test, and Yoshimura Suzuki's Ben Spies had a similar crash while testing in October. Both incidents were the result of tire failure at high speed.
AMA Pro Racing, CEO Scott Hollingsworth was on hand at the Dunlop test and commented on the situation: "Obviously we're thankful that both Jason and Ben are okay and that their injuries weren't more extensive," said Hollingsworth. "We're taking this matter very seriously and are exploring all possible options in terms of dealing with it. We've met with, and will continue to meet with, every major team, DIS officials and representatives from the tire companies to explore possible solutions. It's premature to say what those solutions may be, but restoring the confidence level in the minds of each and every one of our racers is just one of our objectives."
Hollingsworth was upbeat about the valuable input put forth by several participants in the test. "By and large, everyone has a good grasp of the challenges and most are offering good, productive ideas to mitigate the concerns," said Hollingsworth. "It's a matter of 'do you want to be part of the problem or part of the solution.' I'm happy to report that there's a high level of effort being expended to arrive at answers."
Hollingsworth welcomes the opportunity for the teams to test again at Daytona before the 2004 AMA road racing season begins in March. "Ultimately it's going to require additional testing to resolve this matter and DIS was able to free-up a date in late January for another tire test." said Hollingsworth. "That's significant because it will now allow the tire makers to analyze their data, determine what's causing these failures and arrive at new solutions. Essentially it comes down to a balancing act between grip and wear and this added test should go a long way towards delivering tires that adequately achieve both objectives." Hollingsworth added that the additional test will be open to all tire makers competing in AMA Superbike racing.