Alonso Fastest in Friday Practice at Spa
Formula One is back this weekend after its summer break. Belgium’s Spa Francorchamps circuit saw Bridgestone’s soft tyre take Ferrari ‘s Fernando Alonso to the fastest time of the day amidst typically mixed weather conditions. Alonso set his 1m 49.032secs time on a largely dry track right at the end of the afternoon session, which was interrupted by a red flag period. Alonso was also fastest in the morning’s wet conditions, using Bridgestone’s wet tyre to set his time. The full weather range of Bridgestone Potenzas were used today, with the wet and intermediate as well as hard and soft dry slick tyres all seeing track action.
Hirohide Hamashima, Bridgestone director of Motorsport Tyre Development was pleased that the full Potenza range had been utilised in practice: “Today we were able to evaluate our full range of tyres that we have here in Spa, so this gives us and the teams useful data when looking to the rest of the weekend. Over the years we have seen a lot of rain here at Spa, but today it has been very wet indeed. Despite this, we were still able to have some dry running between the showers. The teams will be able to determine the crossover point for when is best to change from the wet to the intermediate or to the dry tyres and this could prove vital if we have a wet qualifying session tomorrow, or wet race on Sunday.
“When we have variable weather conditions, the challenge is being on the right tyre at the right time. This challenge is made even more difficult when you have a long lap like here in Spa. As we saw today, one part of the track can be nearly dry, whilst another very wet. A wet tyre wears very quickly when used on a dry track and a dry tyre is not very good when the track is very wet, so the drivers and teams have a lot of work to do in these conditions.”