Bridgestone's super soft tyre proved to be the fastest rubber on the streets of Monte Carlo for the first day of the Monaco Grand Prix. In warm and sunny conditions overlooking the fabulous Monaco harbour, Nico Rosberg set the day's fastest lap ...
Bridgestone's super soft tyre proved to be the fastest rubber on the streets of Monte Carlo for the first day of the Monaco Grand Prix. In warm and sunny conditions overlooking the fabulous Monaco harbour, Nico Rosberg set the day's fastest lap time, a 1min 15.243secs, in his AT&T Williams during the afternoon practice session.
Track conditions improved throughout the day as rubber was laid on the street course and the circuit surface was cleared of normal public road debris. Brawn GP driver Rubens Barrichello was the fastest driver in the morning session, using the soft compound to set a time of 1min 17.189secs. The soft and super soft compounds are used here in Monaco, both compounds being from Bridgestone's low temperature working range of F1 tyres.
Q&A with Hirohide Hamashima - Bridgestone Director of Motorsport Tyre Development
What was significant about today's running?
"Today was a challenge for all the drivers as the grip level in Monaco is very difficult to learn, and any mistakes are punished by the barriers. There are significant sections of resurfacing, however the new surface is very smooth, just as the older sections of track are, so there is not a significant difference between the two from a tyre performance perspective. As a first day at Monaco, we saw the lap times fall dramatically over the course of the day as the track cleared and the rubber was put down. It was a good day in terms of gaining data as the weather was fine and the running was not interrupted. However, we will not see any F1 running here tomorrow, so it will be interesting to see how the track surface changes for Saturday."
How do you expect this allocation to work over the weekend?
"Even though these are our softest tyres, drivers will struggle for grip here due to the unique slippery nature of this track. Despite this, we saw very good displays from the drivers today with some exceptional car control, as we would expect of the best drivers in the world. The super soft tyre was faster than the soft tyre, as we expected. The difference between the two tyres today was around 0.4 seconds over the fastest lap. Both tyres delivered their fastest lap on the first or second flying lap, and neither tyre suffers greatly in terms of wear or degradation because of the low grip here."