Retail

Pirelli and Bottas: Walking on water

Posted on April 23, 2014

During qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix, Williams driver Valtteri Bottas reached 316kph – that’s nearly 200mph – on the back straight of the Shanghai circuit: the longest on the Formula One calendar this year.

He did this using the Cinturato Green intermediate tire, in conditions so wet that visibility was minimal because of the spray coming from the surrounding cars. As usual, he was on wide Formula One tires, which makes the avoidance of aquaplaning a real challenge, unlike road cars.

And yet Bottas, at only the start of his second season in Formula One, achieved this feat using a Pirelli tire that is not even meant for the very wettest conditions.  With a tread depth of just 2.5mm, the intermediate tire is capable of evacuating 25 liters of water a second per tire – in total 100 liters – at full speed: as Bottas found out. This allows optimal contact to be maintained between the tire and the track. For full wet conditions, the Cinturato Blue is also available, which evacuates 65 liters of water per second per tire.

This technology is carried through to Pirelli’s road car tires as well: the Cinturato P7 Blue tire for the road, specifically targeting wet weather performance, was specifically created using the lessons learned from the extreme wet weather performance of the Cinturato Formula One tires. As a result, it has reduced wet braking distances by 9% compared to direct rivals. The Cinturato P7 Blue was also the very first tire to be awarded an ‘AA’ score by the new European tire label, which grades all new tires on performance.

The new Formula One regulations this year, with reduced downforce, mean that the cars have less drag and are able to reach higher top speeds. As a result, on some of the fastest circuits this season, characterized by extensive straights such as Monza, this year’s cars may break the lap record – and also look set to hit the record for the fastest top speeds on the straights.

Pirelli’s motorsport director Paul Hembery commented: “Seeing Bottas achieve those sorts of speeds, in the wet in China, was one of those moments that gave you goosebumps: which is what Formula One is meant to be all about. The Cinturato Green intermediate is in fact the only tire in our range that is completely unaltered compared to 2013, but it was still able to provide complete control even under extremely marginal conditions. This performance underlines the sheer bravery and talent of today’s Formula One drivers – which is what everyone wants to see.”

Related Topics: Chinese Grand Prix, Cinturato P7 Blue, Formula One, Pirelli

Comments ( 0 )
More Stories
Jeff Bootz brings 24 years experience in the tire industry to his new role as vice president of sales at Nitto Tire U.S.A.
News

Nitto Hires Jeff Bootz to Lead Sales Team

Nitto Tire U.S.A. Inc. has hired Jeff Bootz as vice president of sales. Bootz comes to Nitto Tire from its sister company, Toyo Tire U.S.A., and he begins his new role with Nitto on May 1, 2017.

Alpio Barbara is Modern Tire Dealer's current Tire Dealer of the Year. Nominations for the next winner are due May 26.
News

It's Time to Pick the Next MTD Tire Dealer of the Year

What does it take to be Modern Tire Dealer's Tire Dealer of the Year? Business success, marketing know-how and industry expertise are the foundation. Community involvement and management skills are important, too. And our 2017 award brings something special to the recognition.

News

Price Hike Boosts Michelin's 1Q Sales

Net sales for Michelin Groupe were up 9.9% in the first quarter of 2017, led by early buying of tires ahead of the company’s price increase which went into effect April 1.

Figure 1: Exploded view of a clamp-in style tire pressure sensor. Illustrations courtesy of General Motors Corp.
Article

TPMS: GM/Cadillac Escalade Series: 2007-16

The tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) on 2007 to 2016 GM/Cadillac Escalade Series system uses the remote control door lock receiver (RCDLR), body control module (BCM), four radio frequency (RF) transmitting pressure sensors, and the serial data circuit to perform the sensor learn mode functions.

Be the First to Know

Get the latest news and most popular articles from MTD delivered straight to your inbox. Stay on top of the tire industry and don't miss a thing!