Pirelli arrives in Imola for the fifth round of the WorldSBK with a new slick soft compound rear tyre in an innovative 200/65 size
A new soft rear tyre for the WorldSSP class is also available; plus the Pirelli SBK® Track Day the Monday after the race weekend for riding fans of the brand
The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship makes a stop in Imola, Italy, where from 11 to 13 May 2018 all classes take to the track for the fifth round of the season.
The leader of the WorldSBK championship standings, Jonathan Rea on Kawasaki, arrives to this appointment with a 30-point advantage over the Ducati rider Chaz Davies. However the latter has form in his favour as he won the last four races disputed on the Italian track always beating the current World Champion on the finish line.
Also interesting will be the battle in the WorldSSP with Yamaha riders Lucas Mahias, Randy Krummenacher and Sandro Cortese all separated by just a handful of points.
On the tyre side, at Imola Pirelli will debut for the WorldSBK class a new slick rear tyre in soft compound in an innovative 200/65 size, designed to better distribute the stress on the tread band and to guarantee even higher grip, especially at high temperatures. Also in the WorldSSP class, riders will be able to count on a new development SC0, which, compared to the standard solution, should offer better resistance and constant performance.
The Enzo and Dino Ferrari International Racetrack, better known as the Autodromo of Imola, is named after Enzo Ferrari, founder of the iconic Italian car manufacturer, and his son Dino. The Imola track, set up for motorcycle racing, is a 4936 metre long circuit with 9 right hand turns and 13 left handers, which runs anti-clockwise. The width of the track goes from a maximum of 15 metres to a minimum of 10 metres with a maximum downhill slope of 9.10% between the Piratella and Acque Minerali turns and a maximum uphill slope of 9.38% between the Acque Minerali and Variante Alta turns.
The turn radii goes from a minimum of 11 metres to a maximum of 94, the finish straight is 350 metres long and the rider that starts from pole position lines up on the left.
The circuit and its structures were upgraded in recent years with a restructuring job under the care of the well-known German architect, Hermann Tilke, specialised in building tracks. In the summer of 2009 the New Variante Bassa was created, to meet the approval requirements of the International Motorcycling Federation. This operation, intended to neutralise the slight right hand lean characteristic of car tracks, is located in front of pit lane. Then, in August 2011, 70% of the track surface was repaved.
On the Monday following the race weekend, the circuit set in Emilia-Romagna will host the Pirelli SBK® Track Days initiative, the several track days dedicated to riders who support the Milanese tyre brand, providing all the participants with the opportunity to ride laps on track in order to experience the emotions of the great champions of the FIM Superbike World Championship, in addition to benefiting from the valuable advice of race engineers and of Pirelli’s experts.
The solutions for the WorldSBK and WorldSSP classes
Pirelli brings a total of 4682 tyres to Imola to meet the needs of all four classes of the production derived race series.
For all classes, rain tyres are always available in case of bad weather, while the WorldSBK and WorldSSP categories also have intermediate tyres.
As for the dry solutions, in the WorldSBK class the riders can count on seven solutions, four front and three rear.
The solutions provided for the front are all already known by riders who have been able to use them in previous rounds. In addition to the standard SC1 and SC2 the development SC1 V0952 will be present, a tyre already used by riders in many rounds last year and throughout 2018. This option is highly appreciated by riders, it uses the same compound of the standard SC1 featuring different structural solutions. Another alternative to the standard SC1 is that represented by the W0494, introduced at Aragón, and also carried to Assen, which uses a different construction process than the standard SC1.
As for the rear, the riders will have at their disposal three solutions, among these two which have been already seen on the scene: the W1050, which compared to the standard SC0 is generally more suitable for harsh temperatures, and the standard SC1. The new development is the soft development W1002 solution that uses the same compound of the W1050 but presents itself in the innovative 200/65 size which offers a wider contact area with consequent better distribution of stresses which should guarantee even higher grip, especially at high temperatures.
In the WorldSSP class the riders will find the same solutions already brought from Pirelli to Aragón and Assen with the addition of a new rear tyre for a total of six solutions for dry, three front and three rear.
At the front the standard SC1 and SC2 are supported once again by the development soft solution X0012 which improves handling and performance. This option is positioned halfway between the SC1 and the SC2, trying to maintain the grip of the SC1 and the handling of the SC2.
For the rear, in addition to the standard SC0 and SC1, the new development SC0 X0497 will be available as an alternative, it should offer better resistance and consistent performance compared to the standard solution.
The 2017 Pirelli statistics for Imola
• Total number of tyres brought by Pirelli: 4740
• Number of solutions (including dry, intermediate and wet) for the Superbike class: 7 front and 6 rear
• Number of tyres available for each Superbike rider: 44 front and 34 rear
• Number of solutions for the Supersport class (including dry, intermediate and wet): 5 front and 4 rear
• Number of tyres available for each Supersport rider: 24 front and 21 rear
• Superbike Best Lap Awards both won by: Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati), in1’46.393 (Race 1, 3rd lap) and in 1’46.720 (Race 2, 6th lap)
• Supersport Best Lap Award won by: Lucas Mahias (GRT Yamaha Official WorldSSP team), in 1’51.795 (10th lap)
• Temperature in Race 1: air 24° C, asphalt 50° C
• Temperature in Race 2: air 27° C, asphalt 48° C
• Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Superbike tyres: 282.3 km/h, in Race 1 by Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) at the 8th lap.
• Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Supercorsa SC tyres in Supersport race: 259.8 km/h, by Jules Cluzel (CIA Landford Insurance Honda) at 3rd lap.