Bridgestone has completed its first tests of the winter season with all its teams undertaking a share of the winter test programme. Bridgestone has spent this time working on all areas of tyre development (construction, compound and shape) and ...
Bridgestone has completed its first tests of the winter season with all its teams undertaking a share of the winter test programme. Bridgestone has spent this time working on all areas of tyre development (construction, compound and shape) and specifically ensuring it is heading in the right development direction before stepping up the pace of the programme in January.
Hisao Suganuma, Bridgestone Motorsport's Technical Manager:
"We have spent the past three tests basically establishing our development path, which will act as the baseline for our 2004 campaign. We haven't specifically been chasing top lap times - that will come at the next stage. However, we have gathered some very interesting and promising information over the past few weeks with particular regard to constructions and shapes. We'll continue to refine these findings from January onwards."
"From a technical point of view, these specifications are quite different from our previous tyres. Obviously we knew our designers back in Japan had been working hard to come up with some new and original concepts prior to the start of winter testing and it's been great to finally test what they came up with. We'll continue to evaluate their performance in the New Year so that they can be used during next year's races."
"We also undertook some important compound evaluation tests but our main compound development programme will actually start in January using the information gathered at Barcelona, Jerez and Vallelunga. On top of that, we had a lot of rain, especially in Jerez, which gave us plenty of opportunity to try our next generation of wet weather specs."
"All in all, every one of our teams has work well, including those drivers who have only recently had their first taste of F1. And despite the bad weather, we have come away with some positive feedback and narrowed down the candidates for our future race specs."
The winter testing season commenced with Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro in action in Barcelona alongside Sauber Petronas from 25 - 27 November where mixed weather conditions enabled constructive dry and wet weather testing. The teams then moved down to the south of Spain to a rain blighted Jerez de la Frontera where Scuderia Ferrari was joined from 3 - 5 December by Jordan Ford. Jordan was then replaced by the Sauber team in the second week of testing which finished yesterday, 11 December. The European Minardi team, meanwhile, concentrated their testing efforts last week at the Italian circuit of Vallelunga.
Bridgestone and its teams now break for the duration of the Christmas test ban (15 December - 4 January 2004) but can be expected to be back in action in the New Year. The next large test with Bridgestone equipped teams Scuderia Ferrari, Sauber Petronas and Jordan Ford all present is provisionally scheduled for 19 - 23 January at the Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona.