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GP Week : Issue 35
Getting to grips … With MotoGP on the brink of moving to a single-tyre rule, MICHAEL SCOTT sat down with Bridgestone motorcycle sport manager Hiroshi Yamada and Tyre Development Manager Tohru Ubukata to explore how the changes will affect racing With just two compounds for each rider, will there be enough performance overlap for riders to use all tyres during a race weekend? TU: Basically it is a wider range of tyre performance for next year, so I believe every rider can use both spec. Every rider will have the same spec. We will bring only two specs each of front and rear. We’d say for instance one is medium and one is hard, so let’s say medium spec is for lower temperature end, and hard will cover higher temperature range. With a big performance overlap? TU: Yes, we believe so . Some riders believe they will be spending down time in the pit, with not enough tyres to run all session. TU: I believe these quantities are enough to set up the bike. But anyway the point is every rider has the same spec, so next year the rider has to understand how to use the tyre. Even if some rider doesn’t want to use the soft one, or the hard one, that is the rider’s problem, basically. This is one-make regulation, and I believe this is the philosophy for one-make regulation. 44 Tyres will have to last a lot longer than at present – to maybe run several practice sessions. At least double the distance expected now? TU: Yes, we will make such kind of tyre. With wider range you have long life. That is our target. Do you think people will start the race with a used tyre? TU: Mmmm, possible. Even now they can do that, I believe, even with competition with Michelin and us. Next year, every rider has the same spec, so it depends on the rider’s decision. If someone wants a used one because warm- up is better, he can do that. Next year the most important point is to adjust the bike for the tyre. This year, some rider could choose a correct tyre and get better lap times, rather than set up the bike properly. HM: They will bring the setting, then both specifications will be working. At a so-so level, of course. Every rider will prefer one of the two specs for the race. Some riders are concerned about the situation, if something happens and one specification doesn’t work at all. In this case it will be