Once again its race week, and we are returning to Japan! The tyre allocation has been chosen, which are- C1 (Hard), C2 (Medium), C3 (Soft) and this will be the final outing for the hardest C1 compound.
The second free practice session this weekend, has been extended to 90 minutes in order to allow 2023 prototype slick tyre testing. The Suzuka and Austin tests are there to fine-tune the compounds for 2023. The prototypes are easily recognisable as thy wont carry coloured markings on the sidewalls.
Like Singapore last week, the Japanese Grand Prix was last held in 2019. The challenge is made even greater with the team having to approach the circuit, weather conditions and set-up in completely new way with the latest generation of cars and tyres.
Suzuka is all about lateral forces rather than traction and braking, but the loads are quite evenly balanced between the left and the right hand sides of the car.
Ask the drivers which are their favourite circuits and Suzuka will always be high on the list: it contains demanding corners like nowhere else, such as 130R and Spoon, as well as a truly special atmosphere and history with incredible fans. There’s a roughly equal number of left and right corners in the unique figure of eight layout, which means that the circuit demands are evenly balanced. The sustained energy loads through the tyres are some of the highest we register all year, and the track layout means that we bring the three hardest compounds in our range because of the high levels of tyre duty. With the latest generation of cars being heavier than before and the limits of performance constantly being pushed, that challenge is bigger than ever now. An innovation for this year is the fact that we will be testing some 2023 prototype tyres during an extended free practice session on Friday afternoon, as we finalise the specification for next year with the end of this season approaching.Mario Isla, Motorsport Director.