Round 16 of 20
Suzuka, 6-8 October 2017
The epic Suzuka circuit is renowned for being one of the biggest challenges for tires on the Formula 1 calendar, thanks to its high-energy loads. For the first time Pirelli is not bringing its hard tire compound to the Japanese Grand Prix; instead nominating the P Zero White medium, P Zero Yellow soft and P Zero Red supersoft tire compounds. These tires will have to manage long and fast corners such as the 130R corner that provides the longest continuous g-force loading of the year – and the Spoon, a corner which puts the tires under constant stress throughout the lap. With the 2017 Formula 1 season seeing race laps that are up to five seconds faster than 2016 so far, another significant improvement is expected in Suzuka. A wide range of tire strategy options are available for the Formula 1 drivers to find the best compromise between performance and durability.
THE THREE NOMINATED PIRELLI TIRE COMPOUNDS
THE CIRCUIT FROM A TIRE POINT OF VIEW
• Lateral forces through corners are the main feature, rather than traction and braking.
• Weather, and therefore track temperatures, are quite unpredictable at this time of year.
• Generally, there are high levels of wear and degradation: two stops was the winning tire strategy last year, with varied tactics.
• Teams normally run high downforce, pushing down on the tires to help cornering.
• The track is quite narrow, making overtaking tricky, so tire strategy can make a difference.
• Track evolution is often hard to predict and safety cars can provide another variable.
MARIO ISOLA – PIRELLI’S HEAD OF CAR RACING
“The Japanese Grand Prix continues the trend we’ve seen so far this year of bringing softer, and therefore faster, tires to several Grand Prixs compared to last season. In the case of Suzuka, this is particularly pertinent as it’s one of the most challenging tracks for tires in the entire year, with a very big emphasis on lateral loads that can cause thermal degradation if the tires are not properly managed. This is also one of the reasons why the drivers enjoy Suzuka so much; with the cars travelling a lot faster through the corners this year under the new regulations with wider tires, it’s very possible that we will see another lap record fall and some truly impressive maximum g-force loadings”.
• There are no hard tires in Japan for the first time.
• The final of the Pirelli-equipped Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup took place in Barcelona last weekend, with GRT Grasser Racing Team winning the title for Lamborghini.
• Former F1 driver Erik Comas recently claimed the European Historic Rally Championship with a Lancia Stratos, running on Pirelli P7 Corsa Classic tires.
• McLaren has made the most aggressive tire selection at Honda’s home race, choosing more supersoft tires than any other Formula 1 team.
SUZUKA INTERNATIONAL RACING COURSE MINIMUM STARTING PRESSURES (SLICKS)
|22.5 psi (fronts) | 20.5 psi (rear)|
EOS CAMBER LIMIT
|-3.00° (fronts) | -1.75°(rear)|
THE TIRES NOMINATED THIS SEASON
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