Sonoma: Firestone Motorsports preview

FIRESTONE FIREHAWK FAST FACTS IndyCar Series - Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma Infineon Raceway - Sonoma, Calif. August 22-23, 2009 - Round 14 of 17 Race Distance: 184.2 mi./296.4 km (80 laps on the 2.303-mi./3.706-km permanent road ...

FIRESTONE FIREHAWK FAST FACTS
IndyCar Series - Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma
Infineon Raceway - Sonoma, Calif.
August 22-23, 2009 - Round 14 of 17

Race Distance: 184.2 mi./296.4 km (80 laps on the 2.303-mi./3.706-km permanent road course).

Firestone Firehawk Race Tires Supplied:
* Primary (black-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 646, each entry gets six sets (24 total tires);
* Alternate (red-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 330, each entry gets three sets (12 total tires);
* Wet-condition (rain) tires with grooved tread pattern: 420, each entry has five sets available as needed.

IndyCar Series rules require that teams notify the league within one hour after qualifying as to which of the Firestone dry tire specs drivers will use at the start of the race. All cars must use at least one primary set and one new alternate set during the race, each for a minimum of two green-flag laps. While Firestone Racing is bringing an all-new primary tire specification to the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma, it is designed to be similar in both grip and durability to the tire raced here last year. The softer-compound alternate tires will be used at this track for the first time. The alternate tires are identical in construction to the primaries but contain a softer tread compound which will provide more grip and faster lap times, yet will trade off some compound durability in exchange for those shorter-term advantages. If circumstances require, the Firestone rain tire for this event is the softer, "street course rain" specification.

From Al Speyer, Executive Director, Firestone Racing: "Going into our final road/street course race of the 2009 season, it is fitting to look back on the success of the first year of Firestone Racing's alternate tire program in the IndyCar Series. The alternate tires have met and in some circumstances exceeded our expectations as far as contributing to the excitement of on-track action and inviting different strategies. The series' unique knock-out style qualifying procedures at road/street events really showcase the competitive edge the alternate tires can provide. As for this event, Infineon Raceway puts a premium on grip because passing maneuvers can be a challenge at times. However, the addition of the alternate tires and the overtake-assist, or 'push to pass,' button from Honda should provide more passing opportunities and pave the way for good battles on the track."

Firestone "Tire-ific" Move of the Race: Following each race, Firestone Racing nominates three drivers who best utilized their Firestone tires to make a bold, dramatic move during the event. Fans can go to www.indycar.com to vote for the nominee they believe made the most "Tire-ific" move of the race. Nominees from Mid-Ohio were Marco Andretti, Scott Dixon and Ryan Hunter-Reay. The $10,000 prize winner will be announced in Sunday's pre-race activities.

-credit: firestone motorsports

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Scott Dixon , Ryan Hunter-Reay , Marco Andretti