Firestone Firehawk Race Tires Supplied:
* Primary (black-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 770, each entry gets six sets (24 total tires);
* Alternate (red-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 350, each entry gets three sets (12 total tires);
* Wet-condition (rain) tires with grooved tread pattern: 436, each entry has five sets of the street-course rain tire available this weekend.
The alternate tire program, part of the IZOD IndyCar Series since 2009, calls for a second tire specification at a road- or street-course race weekend using the same construction as the primary specification, but with a softer tread compound to provide more grip and faster lap times while trading off compound durability in exchange for those shorter-term advantages. Firestone's alternate tires are easily identified by their bright red sidewalls.
Firestone is introducing a new primary tire this weekend while returning to Barber with a proven alternate tire. The new primary tire features the same body construction as the 2010 Barber primary, with an updated tread compound designed to produce a similar performance level as the 2010 spec. Teams participating in last month's Barber open test ran this tire spec. The alternate tire is the same spec that was used at Barber last year.
Per series regulations, all cars must use at least one set of primary tires and one new alternate set during the race, each for a minimum of two green-flag laps. Otherwise, teams are free to use their tire allotment as they see fit, though a new rule for 2011 limits cars to one set of tires (team choice of primary or alternate) for each qualifying segment.
The Firestone black-sidewall primary tire is making its race-weekend debut.
From Al Speyer, Executive Director, Firestone Racing: "Barber Motorsports Park is already a favorite on the calendar, in part due to the way the fans have embraced IndyCar racing, so we're excited to return. While the Firestone black-sidewall primary tire is making its race-weekend debut, it already showed at the open test that it could stand up to the rigors of Barber. We're supplementing that with a very familiar Firehawk alternate tire that served as the alternate at both Barber and Edmonton last year, as well as the primary spec at Infineon."
Firestone "Tire-ific" Move of the Race: Following each race in 2011, Firestone Racing nominates three drivers who best used their Firestone tires to make a bold, dramatic move during the event. Fans can go to www.indycar.com following the race and vote for the nominee they believe made the most "Tire-ific" move. Simona de Silvestro, whose savvy drive moved her up 13 positions to finish fourth, was the leading vote-getter for the March 27 race at St. Petersburg and will be presented the $10,000 check in pre-race ceremonies Sunday.
-source: firestone racing