Pirelli announces the selected solutions for the second round of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship
To tackle the Chang International Circuit in Buriram, Thailand, Pirelli chooses soft and medium compound tyres which are predominantly standard in anticipation of high asphalt temperatures
Next weekend, Pirelli will return to the track for the second round of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship which will be held in Thailand at the Chang International Circuit of Buriram from Friday 23rd to Sunday 25th March 2018.
The Thai event only features the WorldSBK and WorldSSP classes. The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship made its debut on the Chang International Circuit in the 2015 season and this will be the fourth consecutive year that the Thai circuit will host the production based world championship series. Kawasaki has won all of the past editions, with five successes for Jonathan Rea and one for his team-mate Tom Sykes.
For this event, Pirelli brings almost 3000 tyres to the track, most of which are standard solutions, even if there will be no lack of development options. On the basis of the experience gained on this track in past editions, Pirelli focuses on soft rear solutions which, also due to the high asphalt temperatures that the circuit usually registers during this period, should offer the best performance.
The Chang International Circuit was inaugurated in October 2014 on a project by the famous architect Hermann Tilke and, to date, is the only Thai circuit to obtain the FIM homologation to host races of this category. The track is 4.554 kilometres long and features 12 corners, 5 on the left and 7 righthanders.
Historically, the circuit has never been very demanding for the tyres, but the high humidity index typical of the area and the usually very high asphalt temperatures can still represent important unknown factors.
The solutions for the WorldSBK and WorldSSP classes
Again in Thailand, as happened in the first round in Australia, only the pilots of the WorldSBK and WorldSSP classes will be taking to the track.
As always, both categories will have both dry, intermediate and wet tyres available for a total of 2878 tyres that Pirelli has brought to Buriram for this second round of the season.
In the WorldSBK class, riders will have six slicks, four front and two rear solutions available, three of which are standard and the same number are development options.
For the front, in addition to the standard SC1 and SC2, which are the soft and medium compound options, two more soft compound development solutions will be available: the W0746 specification, which was also present in the opening round in Australia which features an even softer compound than the standard SC1. This should guarantee a high level of grip at the front, and the V0952 specification, already used by the riders in 2017 in Aragón, Assen, Imola, Donington, Misano, Laguna Seca, Lausitzring, Portimão, Magny-Cours, Jerez and Losail and this year in Australia. This last option uses the same compound of the standard SC1 but has different structural properties.
At the rear, the riders will be able to choose between the new standard SC0, the softest solution, and the development SC0 W0576, in a soft compound, already brought by Pirelli to Laguna Seca, Magny-Cours and Jerez in 2017.
In the WorldSSP category, there are a total of five options for the dry; three front and two rear.
At the front the standard SC1 will be joined by two development SC1: the W0378, introduced in 2017 at Lausitzring and brought also to Australia this year, which uses the same compound of the standard SC1 but with a different construction process; and the V0533, used in 2017 at Phillip Island, Buriram, Imola and Losail and which, at the level of the compound, is positioned more or less halfway between the standard SC1 and the SC2.
For the rear Pirelli relies on the standard SC0 and SC1 solutions.
The 2017 Pirelli statistics for Chang
• Total number of tyres brought by Pirelli: 2594
• Number of solutions (including dry, intermediate and wet) for the Superbike class: 5 front and 5 rear
• Number of tyres available for each Superbike rider: 33 front and 29 rear
• Number of solutions for the Supersport class (including dry, intermediate and wet): 4 front and 4 rear
• Number of tyres available for each Supersport rider: 21 front and 21 rear
• Superbike Best Lap Awards both won by: Jonathan Rea(Kawasaki Racing Team), in 1'33.436 (Race 1, 5th lap) and Marco Melandri (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) in 1'33.644 (Race 2, 3rd lap).
• Supersport Best Lap Award won by: Christian Gamarino (BARDAHL EVAN BROS. Honda
Racing), in 1'38.721 (2nd lap).
• Temperature in Race 1: air 35° C, asphalt 57° C
• Temperature in Race 2: air 36° C, asphalt 60° C
• Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Superbike tyres: 306.8 km/h, in Race 1 by Jordi Torres (Althea BMW Racing Team) at the 9th lap.
• Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Supercorsa SC tyres in Supersport race: 268.7 km/h, by Niki Tuuli (Kallio Racing) at 6th lap.