Pirelli Travels to UK for Decisive World Rally Stage
Pirelli has brought its Scorpion-brand rally tyres to the gravel roads of the UK for the final decisive stage of the 2009 World Rally Championship, which begins tomorrow. The roads around Cardiff usually present a tough option when the WRC visits, with heavy rainfall, uneven roads, slippery land, mud and insidious special stages during the Rally GB, but this year, thanks to a change in the scheduling, there is a chance that dry, milder conditions may prevail. Therefore, Pirelli states that it will use soft compound Scorpion tyres as part of the key elements in the race to final victory.
Pirelli believes its tyres could be decisive in the fight for WRC world champion title, which sees Hirvonen (Ford) and Loeb (Citroen) in the top two positions – just one point apart – after eleven rallies. The Manufacturers and World Production title have already been won respectively by Citroen, one race ahead of time at the Spanish Rally, and Armindo Araujo, who raced on board a Ralliart Italy team Mitsubishi Lancer. The Rally GB will also be the last race of the 2009 Pirelli Star Driver programme.
The supplier has developed a run flat tyre to reduce the risks of punctures that also aim to allow special stage completion without excessive delays and without damaging the car’s mechanics and bodywork. The strengthened sidewalls resist cuts and abrasions, whilst the deeper grooves work towards greater tyre endurance, and the angle of the oblique grooves aids cornering.
Mario Isola, Pirelli Rally Manager, said: “I have every confidence in the handling, performance and wear level of Scorpion ‘Soft’ tyres, although, very probably, we will be racing in very different conditions to those of past years. If it is true that the Welsh roads are rather abrasive, and the temperatures forecast significantly higher than those of previous editions, it is also true that the Pirelli Scorpion ‘Soft’ have been tested both by our engineers and by the teams, in both summer and severe conditions, always showing excellent resistance to wear and high performance levels.”