Straight off the back of the French Grand Prix Bridgestone heads to Silverstone for the British Grand Prix, the ninth round of the FIA Formula One World Championship, where the medium and hard compound Potenzas will be put through their paces on...
Straight off the back of the French Grand Prix Bridgestone heads to Silverstone for the British Grand Prix, the ninth round of the FIA Formula One World Championship, where the medium and hard compound Potenzas will be put through their paces on the abrasive high speed challenging circuit.
Bridgestone Motorsport has its British base in Langley, only 70 miles away from Silverstone, from which the Formula One Potenza tyres for the European races are distributed. The close distance means that this is something of a home-coming for Bridgestone. This is the shortest drive for the Bridgestone trucks but, having only just returned from France, it means a busy turn-around.
The circuit itself has a high speed layout with a slower complex before the main straight. The track surface is abrasive and this, allied to its high speed nature, means the hard and medium compound Bridgestone Potenzas have been chosen.
The British weather has included a lot of rain recently and current forecasts predict this will be the case for the Grand Prix weekend, meaning Bridgestone's wet and extreme wet Potenzas could come into play. Knowing when to use or not to use these tyres will be the deciding factor if they are employed in the race.
Kees van de Grint, Bridgestone Motorsport Head of Track Engineering Operations:
Q: What are the challenges of the Silverstone circuit?
KvdG: Although the circuit is not as fast as it used to be it is still a very fast track with an average speed over the lap of 230 kph. The majority of the lap is very fast and in top gears so cars require fast corner stability and the tyres need to have good heat and wear resistance, which is why we will bring the hardest tyres in our range. The whole lap is not high speed however, as the lower speed complex at the end of the lap is where time can be lost or found. Tyre grip and minimizing graining will be deciding factors here.
Q: Does Silverstone have any special significance for Bridgestone?
KvdG: Silverstone is the home of British motorsport and it is also a second home for Bridgestone Motorsport,as well as a home for many of our employees. We will see many of our non-trackside staff in attendance for this event and it is a special occasion for us. Silverstone is also the location for many of Bridgestone Motorsport's successes in the early days of its existence in junior formulas like F2 and F3.