Bridgestone Scraps 2009 Tyres Gap Policy

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By Alex Kapadia

Bridgestone is closing the gap between its tyres compounds in the forthcoming Hungarian, European, Belgian and Italian Grand Prix’s

For most of the Formula One races so far this season, Bridgestone has tried to make the two tyres “two steps” apart –for example, soft and hard rather than soft and medium.

This new system, which was requested by the Formula 1 teams, was designed to create greater variation between cars’ performances at different stages, and to encourage better racing.

However, Hirohide Hamashima, the boss of the motorsport tyre development for Bridgestone said it had decided that it would not be practical to have a big tyre disparity at Budapest, Valencia, Spa or Monza, so would go back to using consecutive compounds at those four tracks.

He said: “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 only time Bridgestone had previously used two similar tyre compounds so far this year was in the Monaco GP.

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