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Bridgestone ready for final round of 2009

Bridgestone ready for final round of 2009

MotoGP’s sole tyre supplier Bridgestone is prepared for the final race of the season at Valencia.

Round 17 of the 2009 MotoGP season provides Bridgestone with a very different test to that of Sepang, where the tyres supplied by the manufacturer stood up well to some very testing conditions.

As one of the shortest circuits in the MotoGP calendar, and with a twisting but slower nature, Bridgestone have opted to provide the front slicks for the Gran Premio Generali de la Comunitat Valenciana in a softer specification than that of Malaysia. The rear slicks available will be in the same medium and hard compounds as at Sepang, although asymmetric to account for the imbalance of left and right-handers at the Spanish circuit.

Previously, the track temperature has varied significantly season-on-season, and with the 2009 race later in the year than last season there were added variables for Bridgestone to take into consideration. The total race distance of 30 laps – which includes 420 turns – means that the length of the race was also a key component to the specifications provided, at a track where Troy Bayliss (2006) and Casey Stoner (2008) have both won on Bridgestone tyres in recent years.

“Valencia is a technically complex circuit with nine left-handers and five rights within a slow, twisty lap that demands good stability and a set-up that allows for fast and precise changes of direction,” explained Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department Manager, Tohru Ubukata. “Although the temperature will be much lower than in Malaysia and the track is slower, is still represents a good technical challenge for us. It’s what we could call a busy circuit, because the length of the lap and the number of corners means that the tyres are always working and have very little respite.”

“The anti-clockwise layout means that we need good durability on the left side of the tyres and optimal warm-up performance on the right, making asymmetric rear tyres very important here. The bikes are often leant over which places more emphasis on the tyre shoulders. Those who have a good rider and machine package will be rewarded, as those who do not can be prone to generating excess heat in the tyres so a good smooth rhythm is very important.”

Hiroshi Yamada, Bridgestone Motorsport Department Manager, added, “We enter this last round with another championship won on our tyres, and whilst this was a foregone conclusion for us, what’s important to me is how it was won. Five different riders have won races this year, which is more than last season, and the championship has been much closer than in previous years. To make the competition closer was always one of the main objectives of single tyre supply.”


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