British GP: Bridgestone preview

Bridgestone will take its hard and soft compounds to the Silverstone race circuit for round eight of the FIA Formula One World Championship, the British Grand Prix on June 19-21, the last scheduled Grand Prix at this track. This race is...

Bridgestone will take its hard and soft compounds to the Silverstone race circuit for round eight of the FIA Formula One World Championship, the British Grand Prix on June 19-21, the last scheduled Grand Prix at this track.

This race is something of a homecoming for Bridgestone Motorsport as their British base is located just 70 miles away in Langley, near Heathrow airport. This means it will be a busy weekend for the Japanese tyre company, with guests and family amidst the crowds to see Bridgestone's elite force of tyre technicians and engineers hard at work supplying tyres to all the teams in F1.

Competitors face the challenge of a predominantly high speed circuit, with a low speed section before the start-finish straight. The high speeds and also the abrasive nature of the track surface mean that tyres are worked hard over the weekend.

Hiroshi Yasukawa - Director of Bridgestone Motorsport, said: "Silverstone is a destination that we know well and it is one where there have been many interesting races over the years. Bridgestone Motorsport has its European base in Britain, so Silverstone is like a home race for us. One of our aims when we entered Formula One as a tyre supplier was to increase brand awareness and Bridgestone in the UK has worked hard to capitalise on our Formula One programme. This is one of our key European markets and so we hope everyone enjoys some thrilling racing this weekend."

Q&A with Hirohide Hamashima - Bridgestone Director of Motorsport Tyre Development

What are the challenges of Silverstone?

"The low speed section of the track, before the start-finish straight, is a breeding ground for graining so we expect to see quite a lot of this here, especially at the beginning of the weekend. The majority of a lap at Silverstone is very fast so cars require good fast corner stability and the tyres need good heat and wear resistance. The last sector is lower speed so a good set-up has to work well here as well as in the high speed sections."

Are there particular weather considerations for Silverstone?

"Last year's race was wet and we have often seen changeable weather here so it could be interesting. Silverstone has an abrasive track surface and it does dry quite quickly from being wet. We have not used our new intermediate compound in a wet race yet. It is a soft compound but we are confident it will work well, even at an abrasive circuit like Silverstone."

Stats & Facts
Number & Spec of tyres brought to Silverstone 1800 (Hard & Soft. Intermediate/wets)
Pole position time 2008: 1min 21.049secs (Kovalainen)
Fastest race lap 2008: 1min 32.150secs (Raikkonen)
Top three 2008: Hamilton, Heidfeld, Barrichello

-credit: bridgestone

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Hiroshi Yasukawa