With the exception of Monaco Grand Prix Bridgestone this season has been following the concept of leaving a gap in rubber stiffness between the two allocated tyres for each race. That means that for example drivers have had to use super soft and medium or soft and hard rather than super soft and soft or medium and hard compounds at each GP (unless the race is declared wet).
For the four races from the Hungarian Grand Prix to the Italian Grand Prix Bridgestone will allocate consecutive compound pairings for each of these races.
Hirohide Hamashima, Bridgestone Director of Motorsport Tyre Development:
“We have made the change to the tyre allocation concept based on the data we have collected from races so far this year combined with our knowledge of the tracks we visit for these races. The cars of 2009 are very different to those used last year so we have learnt a lot so far this year, and they do use their tyres differently from before.
Hungary is a circuit where the characteristics demand our softest tyres. This is also true for street courses, and we used the softest allocation earlier in the year at Monaco, and will again in Valencia. In Spa the weather temperatures can be quite cool, so the hard compound could have caused difficulties, and the super soft would have been too soft for this track, so that means the allocation of medium and soft is obvious. In Monza the hard compound would have given too big a difference between it and the soft, so we will bring the soft and the medium.”
The allocations are as follows:
Hungary – super soft and soft
Valencia – super soft and soft
Belgium – soft and medium
Monza – soft and medium
Bridgestone says the nature of these four tracks required the change in the policy but there will be many people out there believing that the whole non-consecutive tyre policy is a failure and Bridgestone may be dropping it for good. Well, we will see when the tyre allocations for the final fly away races come out.
The next GP in Germany will feature super soft and medium tyres.