SUPERKARTS! USA ANNOUNCES OFFICIAL TIRE FOR NEW SEASON Bridgestone / Firestone signs one-year agreement with the nation's premier shifter kart organization DUBLIN, OH - The Superkarts! USA organization has announced their spec tire program for...
SUPERKARTS! USA ANNOUNCES OFFICIAL TIRE FOR NEW SEASON
Bridgestone / Firestone signs one-year agreement with the nation's premier shifter kart organization
DUBLIN, OH - The Superkarts! USA organization has announced their spec tire program for the new season and for the first time in the group's six-year history, Bridgestone / Firestone will be the official rubber. The new one-year agreement will provide a level playing field for all SKUSA competitors, both on its rapidly expanding regional level and its new professional series, the North American ProMoto Tour. The application of a single tire brand will provide continuity across the country for the flourishing racing organization, which now counts nine regional programs to its credit. This is a major step forward for SKUSA and they are extremely excited about the opportunity of working with the global tire manufacturer.
"While considering the many facets of a spec tire program, it was vital that the racers be provided relief from tire concerns while keeping a watchful eye on cost control," commented Jim Murley, SKUSA Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. "This partnership between SKUSA and an industry giant like Bridgestone / Firestone is a big step in that direction."
The new six-race North American ProMoto Tour will enjoy the most ambitious spec rubber program, as each of its four classes will run Bridgestone. A move to strictly 5" tires will eliminate the need to decide between 5" and 6" rubber and will substantially lower the tire bills of the participating teams. Even the headline Formula S1 class will run a spec tire for the first time, developing a level playing field for all the competitors involved. The feature class will run the Bridgestone YEX compound, while the semi-pro Formula S2 drivers will use the harder YGB (formerly YFB). The FS2 class has been extremely successful in developing talent for graduation into Formula S1 and this season will see the much-anticipated move of several top up-and-coming drivers. The Formula K1 (80 Sr.) and 80 Jr. teams will both run the Bridgestone YGC (YFC) in an effort to reduce tire consumption by using a harder and more durable compound.
On the regional level, two differences will occur. Unlike the ProMoto Tour, the FS1 class will remain the 'open' tire class it has been since the organization's inception. The group understands that the other tire manufacturers have a desire to be part of their program and this opening will allow this participation while simultaneously opening the door for future contingency programs, all of which can only benefit the racer.
"Through our regional programs at the Formula S1 level, all tire manufacturers are invited to participate and compete," Murley added. "We desire to be as inclusive as possible while steering the organization into motorsports."
The second option that has been afforded to the regional SKUSA competitors will be the 6" tire. In an effort to ensure that these tires and their existing rims do not become immediately obsolete, SKUSA will continue to allow the use of 6" tires and wheels in 1999, although as part of a progressive plan to cut competition costs, the 6" products will be phased out over the next two years. The FS2, FK1 and 80 Jr. class will all run the same compounds tagged on the ProMoto Tour, while any additional region-specific classes will be left up to the decision of the Regional Director.
This new relationship with Bridgestone USA will allow SKUSA to take yet another step forward in their quest to bring shifter kart racing into mainstream motorsports. Using their new North American ProMoto Tour as their ultimate display, Superkarts! USA is readying for another season of massive development. With their new Official Tire program now secured and providing a solid base for growth, this last year of the century will no doubt propel the young organization to the forefront as we begin the new millennium.