Czech Grand Prix, Brno: Bridgestone Race Review
Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa came out on top of a momentous last lap battle with Factory Yamaha Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo to score his second successive MotoGP™ victory and move even closer to his compatriot in the championship standings.
The race started at a fierce pace with Lorenzo leading Pedrosa for the first half of the race, the two riders pushing each other to set a new circuit lap record on six consecutive laps, with a new mark of 1’56.274 set by Lorenzo on lap eight. After Pedrosa made his way past Lorenzo on lap eleven, the two riders held position until the last lap where Lorenzo squeezed past Pedrosa, before the Repsol Honda rider hit back at the final corner, getting the better drive to the line to win the race by 0.178 seconds. Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Cal Crutchlow also rode a faultless race to claim his first ever MotoGP™ podium by taking third place, while Power Electronics Aspar’s Randy de Puniet made the most of his good qualifying performance to cross the finish line in eighth position to be the highest placed CRT rider.
Rain fell overnight and on Sunday morning at Brno, causing less than ideal grip levels on the circuit, while a cool breeze and cloud cover kept track temperatures low. These conditions placed a premium on greater edge grip and warm-up performance for the rear tyre, resulting in every rider selecting the softer rear option, the medium compound slick for the race. Front tyre choice was also uniform across the field with every rider selecting the harder front slick; the extra-hard compound providing optimum cornering and braking stability with only a slight compromise in grip compared to the softer option. Although track conditions weren’t particularly favourable, the wider operating temperature range of the 2012 specification tyres allowed riders to effectively use the extra power of the 1000cc machines in the cool temperatures.
Pedrosa’s consecutive victories at Indianapolis and Brno have closed the gap to Lorenzo in the MotoGP™ championship to just thirteen points with six rounds remaining.
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium, Extra-hard. Rear: Medium, Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Dry. Ambient 20-20°C; Track 23-23°C (Bridgestone measurement)
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“The weather today was as forecast so the race simulations that took place yesterday in similar weather and track conditions ensured teams had a good setup for today’s race. The cool conditions resulted in every rider selecting the softer rear and harder front slicks, with this selection offering the optimal combination of rear edge grip and front-end stability given today’s conditions. This tyre selection worked very well today as despite track conditions being less than ideal, riders could still effectively get the power of the 1000cc engines to the ground, with a new circuit record lap being set and the overall race time being twenty five seconds quicker than last year. Our work here at Brno is only half done however, we now turn our attention to tomorrow’s group test where we will debut a new rubber compound we have developed, so I look forward to seeing how this is received.”
Source: Bridgestone Motorsport Press Release