The Pirelli DIABLO™ Superbike tires are ready to take to the track at the Californian circuit of Laguna Seca for the ninth round of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship
Standard SC1 and SC2 flanked by the development S1699 tire are the solutions for the front; at the rear, standard SC0 and SC1 for all, with the addition of the R1368 for the EVO riders and T384 for the Superbike class. For Superpole, the new T0223 tire which launched with success at Misano is back
Salinas (USA), July 10, 2014 – Pirelli is back in action on Friday at the fascinating Laguna Seca American circuit with the riders for the ninth round of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship. It will provide riders with standard SC1 and SC2 flanked by the development S1699 tire as solutions for the front. For the rear; standard SC0 and SC1 for all, with the addition of the R1368 for the EVO riders and the T384 only for the Superbike class. For Superpole, the new T0223 tire, which successfully launched at Misano is back.
The Laguna Seca round is an event involving only the premier class riders and is the last before the summer break, which will last until 5-7 September, when all classes return to race at Jerez de la Frontera, Spain.
With five rounds to go, Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team), who this year has already taken three double victories by winning both races at Aragón, Misano and Donington, leads the overall standings with 284 points. He has a lead of 43 points over his closest pursuer Sylvain Guintoli (Aprilia Racing Team) who, since the beginning of the season, has achieved two first places, one in Australia and the other in Assen. Not very far from them are Loris Baz (236 points) and Jonathan Rea (Pata Honda World Superbike Team, 235 points). Marco Melandri (Aprilia Racing Team), fifth in the league, has a tally of 192 points.
Laguna Seca VS tires: the "Corkscrew" stresses the front tire and affects the grip of the rear tire
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca is a 3610 (2.243 miles) meter long and 15 meter wide circuit with 7 left-hand curves and 4 right. The rider in pole position starts on the right hand side. The longest straight which measures 453 meters (0.281 miles), and the track runs counter-clockwise.
The track was built in 1957 on the side of a hill 250 meters above sea level. In 1988 it achieved the minimum length required by the FIM rules, due to the construction of a new section between turns 2 and 5.
The layout of Laguna Seca makes overtaking difficult due to relatively few points where it is possible to ‘attack’.
Laguna Seca is perhaps the most interesting circuit in the United States because of its configuration with massive elevation change and fast sections alternating with slower corners. Usually on Friday the track looks dirty because of the presence of sand but there is another strange phenomenon: fog which arises in the early hours of the morning. A time in which the temperature can be several degrees lower than in the afternoon because of the location of the circuit; on a hill not far from the sea. That's why in addition to solutions in soft compound for the rear, which are suitable for high temperatures, Pirelli also brings the SC1, offering most protection in the event of lower temperatures.
In the famous section named the "Corkscrew" (Turn 8 and 8A), a very spectacular chicane situated on top of the hill runs down a very steep slope. Riders cover with a speed of around 50 mph (80 kph), seeing rapid counter slope changes of direction that stress the front tire and, at the same time, the load transfer can affect the grip of the rear tire.
The start-finish straight is very short, with two slight changes of direction where the maximum speed is reached, equal to 167.4 mph (270 kph) for Superbikes, is another challenging point.
Finally, the right-hand turns 3 and 4 are critical to setting quick lap times, which is why it is very important that the tires have excellent grip performance even on these slow corners of near ninety degree angles.
Pirelli solutions for the Superbike class:
Pirelli comes to Laguna Seca with a load of 1939 tires to meet the needs of the riders of the premier class of the Championship.
Each rider can choose from 30 front and 38 rear tires including, in addition to the dry tires, the intermediate DIABLO™ Wet and DIABLO™ Rain tires as well.
Regarding slick tires, there are three solutions provided at the front and the same quantity for the rear.
For the front Pirelli, in addition to the standard SC1 and SC2 respectively in medium-soft and medium-hard compounds, arrives a third and final option; the well-known S1699, which debuted successfully at Aragón offering more support in the approach to the corner in favor of better steering precision, qualities that have made it the choice of the majority of riders at Assen, Imola, Donington, Misano and Portimao.
At the rear, the standard SC0 and SC1 and then a solution dedicated to each class: Superbike riders can rely on the T384 solution, a development tire in soft compound only brought so far to Imola tests and Portimão. The standard solution should provide excellent grip even with very high temperatures. EVO riders can exclusively use the R1368, a development solution that uses a very soft compound offering a lot of grip when used in high temperatures, up to this point has been brought only to Misano and Imola.
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The 2013 Pirelli statistics for Laguna Seca:
• Total number of tires Pirelli brought: 1310
• Number of solutions (dry, intermediate and wet) for the Superbike class: 4 front and 5 rear
• Number of tires available for each Superbike rider: 29 front and 31 rear
• Superbike Best Lap Awards won by: Chaz Davies (BMW Motorrad GoldBet SBK), 1'23.581 (Race 1, 3rd lap) and by Davide Giugliano (Althea Racing), 1'23.707 (Race 2, 7th lap)
• Temperature in Race 1: air 81°F, asphalt 108°F
• Temperature in Race 2: air 75°F, asphalt 108°F
• Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Superbike tires: 159 mph (256.4 km/h), in Race 1 by Davide Giugliano (Althea Racing) at 2nd lap.