Wet start to Silverstone The British Grand Prix got off to a wet start today with Bridgestone's rain tyres called into action for both free practice sessions. Heavy showers made for difficult running in the morning but by the afternoon a dry...
Wet start to Silverstone
The British Grand Prix got off to a wet start today with Bridgestone's rain tyres called into action for both free practice sessions. Heavy showers made for difficult running in the morning but by the afternoon a dry line had developed and the Bridgestone cars dominated the top ten. Rubens Barrichello finished fastest overall with a lap time of 1:31.457, closely followed by his Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro team-mate Michael Schumacher. It was a good day for Honda-supplied teams with Giancarlo Fisichella and Takuma Sato 3rd and 5th for DHL Jordan Honda, and Jacques Villeneuve 6th for Lucky Strike B.A.R Honda. Both Sauber Petronas cars also made the top ten.
Rubens Barrichello was also quickest in the morning session, with a lap time of 1:33.531. Next best among the Bridgestone runners was Giancarlo Fisichella in 6th place. Michael Schumacher spent most of the session as a spectator, watching trackside after spinning at Farm on his first lap out of the pits. The OrangeArrows cars ran in neither session.
Hisao Suganuma, technical manager of Bridgestone Motorsport:
"All three of our rain tyre specifications were tried today and overall the results look good. In particular, the intermediates are working well. If it rains tomorrow and on Sunday, I think we can be fairly confident."
The Tyre Choice
In anticipation of rain and changing temperatures this weekend, Bridgestone has brought two types of intermediate tyre to Silverstone and one normal wet weather tyre. Should the weather improve for qualifying and the race, Bridgestone's five teams will have two new specifications of dry weather tyre to choose from.
"We will have a busy afternoon and evening going through the huge amount of information we have gathered today. In particular, the lap times will help us work out the crossover point between wet tyre to intermediate and from intermediate to dry so we can recommend to our teams the best option."
Ross Brawn, technical director of Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro:
"The whole day was very useful with a full range of wet conditions which meant we were able to try all three wet tyres and find out when and how we should use them. We ran all three tyres at different times so we could work out the overlap times when the wet should become intermediate and vice versa. We now have all the information we need if it is a wet race on Sunday. This morning Michael spun and a feature we have built into the software cut the engine."