Bahrain GP: Bridgestone Friday practice notes

Bridgestone Potenzas on top form at Bahrain wonder circuit Bridgestone's Formula One Potenza tyres made an excellent debut today with Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro's Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello setting the pace as cars ran for the...

Bridgestone Potenzas on top form at Bahrain wonder circuit

Bridgestone's Formula One Potenza tyres made an excellent debut today with Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro's Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello setting the pace as cars ran for the first in anger on the impressive and brand new 5.417km Sakhir circuit. Michael Schumacher topped the time sheets this morning with a 1m32.158 but it was his teammate Rubens Barrichello who went one better this afternoon as temperatures soared into the fifties, posting a time of 1m31.450.

After months of speculation about the new circuit, its track surface, the surrounding sand dunes and how this will affect the tyres, Bridgestone's four teams got straight to business assessing their Bridgestone specifications. Bridgestone brought four Formula one Potenza specifications to Bahrain this week and all are valid candidates for the inaugural Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday.

Hisao Suganuma, Technical Manager of Bridgestone Motorsport:

"This is the first time Bridgestone tyres have run at this circuit and I have to say it was a positive and constructive start to our weekend. Track conditions this morning were dusty but were better this afternoon and the circuit organisers have done well to keep it as clean as it is. Our tyre choices for this race were based largely on prediction work done in conjunction with our teams and early indications suggest these predictions were on track. Of course it is still early yet and we would like to see what happens tomorrow but Bridgestone will be competitive here."

"Michael was fastest this morning and Rubens fastest this afternoon and our other teams also looked good out there. We had no problems in either session with blistering or tyre failures, which, in these conditions with track temperatures over 50 degrees celcius, is very pleasing. We will now sit down and analyse today's data and then decide with each Bridgestone team which specifications they wish to use. However, it does look as if all of our four Bridgestone Formula One Potenza specifications could be competitive in the race on Sunday."

Ross Brawn, Technical Director of Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro:

"That was a bit chaotic with cars off but what I can say is that I think that this weekend will be quite close due to the nature of the track. Michael was the quickest in each sector [this afternoon] but just couldn't put a lap together. However, we have all we need to make our Bridgestone tyre choice this evening so we're not concerned about that. We have a good strong package this weekend with the car and Bridgestone tyres."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , Ross Brawn
Teams Ferrari