After being considered slower than Michelin for about the complete second half of the season, Bridgestone is determined to fight back during the upcoming GP's:“We start our final rundown to the end of the season now,” said Hiroshi Yasukawa, Director of Motorsport. “Bridgestone’s engineers have been working hard back in Japan making sure our developments efforts have been continued but the three week break in the schedule has given everyone on the race team a welcome opportunity to recharge their batteries and there is definitely an air of determination in Bridgestone. The Hungarian Grand Prix comes at a crucial point in the calendar and it is time now for a final push to ensure we fulfil our role in assisting our teams maximise their potential.”
Approximately 1,400 tyres have already begun their journey to the Hungarian circuit outside Budapest where low grip, high temperatures and circuit changes are all significant factors.
“The Hungarian circuit is probably the second slowest on the F1 calendar with perhaps the second smoothest track surface. This combination means Bridgestone will be bringing tyres from the softer range to search for that extra grip. The track is also twisty and undulating and grip performance will be an issue there,” explained Hisao Suganuma, Technical Manager of Bridgestone Motorsport.
“Certain sections have been resurfaced, the first corner is now almost a hairpin and part of the last section has been altered from a high speed corner to a 90 degree turn. In all, it is approximately 400 metres longer. We will require good consistency in hot conditions from our Bridgestone Potenza tyres, good grip and the ability to change direction.”
When a tyre becomes too hot in one area, it can blister forming a crater-like appearance in the tyre due to the gasification of ingredients. The selection of an incorrect compound (ie. one that is too soft for circuit conditions), too high tyre pressure, or an improperly set up car can cause blistering.