Stoner sets the pace in squally Silverstone practice
Round 6: British MotoGP™ - Free Practice One and Two
Silverstone, Friday 15 June 2012
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium. Rear: Medium-Soft, Medium (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Wet/Dry. Ambient 14-18°C; Track 14-30°C (Bridgestone measurement)
In a day that saw sun, wind and rain descend upon the Silverstone circuit, Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner set a time of 2:04.791 on a dry track in FP2 to finish just ahead of Yamaha Factory Racing’s Ben Spies.
After the morning rain, strong winds and sunshine helped dry out the circuit before FP2, but a brief shower during the session meant track conditions were less than ideal. Stoner’s benchmark time was on the combination of soft slicks front and rear and though a few riders did try the harder slicks in FP2, the variable weather meant the soft slicks with their superior initial grip were better suited to the conditions.
This morning’s wet FP1 session was headed by Ducati’s Valentino Rossi who once again used the GP12’s wet weather prowess to full effect to record a time of 2:19.328. With wet weather a strong possibility for Sunday, Rossi is primed to repeat his impressive podium performance at Le Mans.
The riders will be back on track at 1010 (GMT +1) tomorrow morning for Free Practice 3, with the one hour qualifying showdown commencing at 1355 local time.
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department “We had highly variable weather conditions today with sunny periods broken up by frequent rain showers and strong winds which made it hard for riders to find a rhythm. With such unsettled weather the revised compounds in our rear slick tyres and our new specification front slick tyres were welcomed by the riders as they provided good grip from the out-lap which is essential to safely negotiate the tricky conditions.
“Today was very constructive for us as this was the first time riders got to use the new specification front slick in the soft compound and so we gathered valuable data on its performance. The weather for tomorrow is likely to be similar to today but if we do get periods of fine weather, I expect teams to evaluate the hard slick options to see if they provide better stability in the high-speed corners and under braking.”