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Formula 1

Bridgestone assess tyre behavior in wet qualifying

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After a rain hit qualifying session in Malaysia today, Bridgestone are pleased with the behaviour of both their intermediate and full wet weather tyre compounds.

Mark Webber used the intermediate tyre for his pole position lap around Sepang earlier today, and was over 1.3 seconds faster than the second-placed Mercedes of Nico Rosberg, which was using the full wet tyre.

Bridgestone Director of Motorsport Tyre Development, Hirohide Hamashima, explained that success in the rains of Malaysia comes to the driver who is using the right tyre at the right time. “The weather and timing of when to go out on track were both very important today in qualifying, and this is best illustrated by the grid we will see for tomorrow's race. The weather was very variable and it was difficult to make the correct decision for when to go out on track and which tyre to use. Mark Webber made a very good call for his pole position.

“Both the Intermediate and wet tyre worked well in the conditions today and the cross-over between the two was around where we expected. If we have weather like this tomorrow, being on the correct tyre for the conditions will make all the difference.”

Hamashima also explained the tyre choices facing each of the teams for tomorrow’s race. “As qualifying was held in wet conditions all drivers are free to choose which tyre they will use to start the race. We have gained good data of both dry tyres and the soft is quicker and will work best when the cars are lighter. This means we would expect many to start on the hard tyre if the race starts in dry conditions. If it is wet at the start, then it is very difficult to say, as it depends how wet the track becomes, and if there is any standing water. No matter what the conditions I think we will have a very exciting race with the grid line-up on this challenging Sepang circuit.”

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David is an occasional contributer to the site on matters related to Formula 1. You can follow him on twitter at @Dr_Bean.
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