The unique slippery nature of the Monaco circuit is a real challenge for the Formula 1 drivers as they struggle for grip on the most famous Grand Prix arena in the world.
And, as always, tyres strategy will be crucial to achieving success on the mean streets of Monaco this Sunday.
Hirohide Hamashima, director of motorsport tyres development for Bridgestone, gave his verdict on how the tyres performed on the first day of practise yesterday.
He said: “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.
“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 unique nature of the track means Monaco is the exception to this seasons rule on tyre allocation. This is the only race where Bridgestone is not bringing tyres with distinctly different characteristics.
Mr Hamashima added: “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.”
Alex Kapadia, Operations Team