Bridgestone Motorsport Nurburgring GP2 Series Preview The fifth round of the Bridgestone-supported GP2 Series will take place at the German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring, on 11-12 July. The Nurburgring is an undulating circuit, set in a ...
Bridgestone Motorsport Nurburgring GP2 Series Preview
The fifth round of the Bridgestone-supported GP2 Series will take place at the German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring, on 11-12 July. The Nurburgring is an undulating circuit, set in a scenic and rural location, and is a race which currently only features every other year on the Formula One and GP2 calendar.
GP2 drivers will be racing on the Bridgestone GP2 soft compound tyre here this season, which is one step softer than in 2007 when the medium compound was the specification allocated for this track.
It will be the first time that the soft tyre is used as part of the 2009 GP2 Series, the other circuits scheduled for this compound being Valencia, Spa and Portimao.
In 2007, German driver Timo Glock (iSport International), and Spanish driver Javier Villa (Racing Engineering) both took race wins at the Nurburgring. This season, Nico Hulkenberg (ART Grand Prix) is the only German driver in the GP2 Series and will be looking to emulate Glock's success in the feeder series which took him to Formula One.
Quote from Hirohide Hamashima - Director of Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development
"At the Nurburgring one of the key factors influencing the races is the weather, as it can be very changeable so we could see our GP2 wet tyre used for the first time this season. This circuit has an interesting course layout and there are two typical points for overtaking, these are the fast downhill corners at turn one and turn thirteen. The braking and turning in required for these high-speed corners is a challenge for the drivers. It is anticipated that the wear rate and degradation of Bridgestone's soft compound tyre will not be too high at this venue, but tyre management will be important due to the heavy braking necessary for overtaking here."
Stats & Facts
Number & Spec of tyres for Silverstone: 760 (soft and wet)
Pole position time 2007: 1m 42.327s - L di Grassi, ART Grand Prix
Fastest race lap 2007: 1m 42.511s - S Buemi, ART Grand Prix (R2)
Top three 2007 race1: T Glock (iSport), L di Grassi (ART), K Nakajima (DAMS)
Top three 2007 race 2: J Villa (Racing Eng), K Hirate (Trident), K Nakajima (DAMS)
Bridgestone GP2 Series: Q&A with Nico Hulkenberg
The Nurburgring is a track that demands a lot from those who race around its 5.14km. With its low grip and slippery surface it may not be exceptionally hard on tyres but it is still hard to master.
Situated up in the mountains, the weather is unpredictable and you have to be prepared for anything. Ahead of his home race, ART Grand Prix's Nico Hulkenberg spoke to Bridgestone e-reporter finalist Stephanie Black, about his preparations for racing in Germany.
Q: How do you feel your first season in GP2 is going?
A: It is going alright so far, our qualifying statistics are good, fourth in Barcelona, third in Monaco and first in Istanbul. Obviously we are just working on improving our race pace; hopefully we can continue to perform well.
Q: What is the best thing about the Nurburgring?
A: I like the circuit as it flows very well. You are changing your driving style always as there are quick sections and slow sections and you are constantly challenged by the diversity of it.
Q: Being your home circuit, is there more pressure to perform well in front of a home crowd?
A: Every race is the same really. It is nice to be at the Nurburgring as it is very close to my home, but at the end of the day it is just another race. Last year I raced there with the Formula 3 Euro Series and performed well. Hopefully I can perform just as well in GP2 - even though the corners are quicker, and the g-force and braking points are different.
Q: How do you think the soft compound Bridgestone tyres will perform at the Nurburgring?
A: I think it will, as always, depend on the weather and how hot it is. We are in the same situation every race, constantly wondering what weather to predict and how the tyres will cope.
Q: What is your fondest memory of racing at the Nurburgring?
A: I have raced there many times, but an especially good memory was in 2005 when I raced with Formula BMW. Finishing first and second, it was a good weekend for me. I have also driven round the Nordschleife in a road car, but that was just for a bit of fun.