As a result Hamilton could finish the race on the medium tyre again after just one more pit stop, to win by 18.6 seconds. This was the Englishman’s 25th race win, equalling the benchmark set by his boss Niki Lauda, as well as Scottish legend Jim Clark
“For us there was never any doubt about what tyres we would run this year. We have run and won with BFGoodrich Tires and believe that the performance of their tyres have played a huge part in our success. The reason for this? They are built tough!” said Rentsch.
The high levels of downforce used in China mean high speeds through the corners, with forces that can exceed 3.8g. The softer tyres are subjected to greater cornering forces as they generate more grip. Around 80% of the lap is spent cornering.
In conjunction with Hankook’s New Zealand distributor Value Tyres, the partnership mirrors the successful USA Formula Drift association with Chris Forsberg’s Hankook 370Z: Hankook claimed the 2013 Formula Drift Tyre Championship, with Forsberg – and all the Hankook drivers – using the Ventus R-S3 (Z222) competition designed road tyre.
Monaco is the slowest circuit on the calendar, which is very twisty with smooth asphalt, and also relies heavily on mechanical grip from the tyres. This makes it the perfect place for the supersoft with its rapid warm-up to make its 2014 debut, in combination with the soft
The next in-season test will take place after the Spanish Grand Prix. Sauber and Toro Rosso will test for Pirelli on the opening day, followed by Force India and McLaren on day two. The final tyre test will be held at Silverstone, after the British Grand Prix. Ferrari and Lotus will drive on the opening day, followed by Red Bull and Marussia on day two.
the event’s format is very similar to that of last year, with 16 stages totalling around 340km. The loops on Friday and Saturday are reasonably consistent and are all 73km in length, while action will end with three tests on Sunday totalling 44km.
Given that each driver was only allocated 16 soft-compound MICHELIN LATITUDE Cross S2 tyres for the rally, crews had to take great care with their strategies, especially as the challenging conditions were far from consistent.
As usual, the rough gravel roads of Portugal proved to be extremely demanding but the unique tread pattern of the new Scorpion XR ensured that Solberg was able to stay on the road and keep tyre wear firmly under control.
The top six all adopted a two-stop strategy (some helped by the safety car) with the Red Bulls of Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel using different tactics to finish fourth and sixth from 13th and 10th on the grid respectively.