By Alex Kapadia
Bridgestone tyres have warned Formula One drivers to exercise caution in order to preserve their tyres during the Malaysian Grand Prix this weekend.
Hirohide Hamashima, director of motorsport development for the tyres company, said: “Sepang is relatively severe on tyres as it has many different corner types and two heavy braking zones after long straights.
“This means the energy going through the tyres over a lap is considerable. Drivers will have to be careful not to lock their brakes, especially when they have heavy fuel loads and cool tyres in the early laps.
“The section between turns seven and eleven are very important at this track as they give a very good illustration of a good overall car set-up. Being strong here is crucial for a good performance at Sepang.
“High temperatures are usually a factor in Malaysia and this could mean more tyre degradation than we’ve seen so far this year, particularly given the severity of the track.
“Last year illustrated that you never know what to expect in Malaysia.”
Hiroshi Yasukawa, director of Bridgestone Motorsport, added: “Last year we had a very exciting Malaysian Grand Prix because of the weather, and this was a good event for us to showcase our full weather range of Bridgestone Potenza tyres.”