Pirelli heads to Imola for the fifth round of the WorldSBK Championship with a new Superpole® tyre and a new soft solution for the rear
The Autodromo Internazionale Enzo and Dino Ferrari will host the first Italian round of theseason followed, on the Monday, by the Pirelli SBK® Track Day, opening the gates for local motorcycling enthusiasts
The fifth round of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship will be going on stage at Imola’s Autodromo Internazionale Enzo and Dino Ferrari from Friday 12 May to Sunday 14 May 2017, when the protagonists of all four classes of the production-based championship, including the newborn WorldSSP300, will be going back on track.
Following the Assen round, where Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes’s Kawasakis took home a double one-two for the Akashi-based manufacturer, the WSBK riders will be challenging each other again on the Italian circuit This is a track which has been traditionally favourable to the Ducati riders, who will be trying their best in order to hold off the supremacy of the Kawasakis. Besides, Imola’s round represents the home race for the red bikes from Borgo Panigale, which, during last year’s edition, managed to thrill the public and their fans thanks to a double victory of the Welshman Chaz Davies
|Chaz Davies in 2016|
Pirelli will also be in the spotlight: in fact, on the occasion of the Italian round, the Milanese brand will unveil a new Superpole® tyre, which, until now, has only been tried by the riders during the official testing session in Motorland Aragón, and a new rear development solution in soft compound, which again has never been used by the riders except for the test session which took place at the beginning of April on the Spanish track. Moreover, on the Monday following the race weekend, the circuit set in Emilia-Romagna will frame the Pirelli SBK® Track Days initiative, currently at its second seasonal edition following a first session organized by the tyre manufacturer on the Thai track of Buriram. It consists of several track days dedicated to riders who support the Milanese tyre brand, providing all the participants with the opportunity to ride laps on track in order to experience the emotions of the great champions of the FIM Superbike World Championship, in addition to benefiting from the valuable advice of race engineers and of Pirelli’s experts
The race track, entitled to Enzo Ferrari and to his son Dino, was officially inaugurated in 1953 with the running of the CONI Grand Prix. From this moment on, Imola took on strategic importance in the motoring world: in 1963 Formula One made its début on the Italian track as well, whereas, for the first World Championship Grand Prix, spectators had to wait until the 1967 edition of the GP of Nations. Only in 2001, following a succession of restructuring and important events which marked the history of the circuit, the Superbike World Championship made its début on Imola’s track. In the layout currently used for motorcycling competition the track has an overall length of 4936 metres, with 9 right hand turns and 13 left hands turns. The radius of the curves goes from a minimum of 11 metres to a maximum of 94, with a finish straight of a 350 metres length. The width of the track goes from a maximum of 15 metres to a minimum of 10 metres with a maximum downhill slope of 9.10% between the Piratella and Acque Minerali turns and a maximum uphill slope of 9.38% between the Acque Minerali and Variante Alta turns. The Imola’s track is universally recognized as a quite technical and difficult track with rather complex turns and braking sections. Amongst several works of modernization, particularly significant is the resurfacing of about 70% of the track’s road surface which took place in August 2011. Such resurfacing has certainly allowed the circuit to regain a good level of mechanical grip but, at the same time, it has significantly increased the track’s aggressiveness on the rear tyres, especially with low to medium temperatures.
|Jonathan Rea in 2016|
Pirelli’s solutions for WorldSBK and WorldSSP
Pirelli is bringing to Imola a total of 4740 tyres for all four classes of the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship. In addition to the dry tyres, wet tyres will be available to all classes in case of bad weather. In WorldSBK eight slick solutions, five for the front and three for the rear. For the front, the complete standard range will be available with the soft SC1, the medium SC2 and the hard SC3, in addition to two SC1 development solutions: the V1271, tried by the riders for the first time ever during the official testing session in MotorlandAragón and afterwards used during the Assen round, and the V0952, already brought to Aragón and Assen, featuring the same SC1 standard compound but with different structural solutions. For the rear, two soft solutions and a medium one: together with the standard soft SC0 the new V0602 development solution will also be available, featuring a compound in the SC0 area and tried by the riders for the first time ever on the occasion of the official tests in Motorland Aragón. The third and last option will be the the V1199, already used by the riders in Assen and providing an SC1 compound with specific structural characteristics.
Five dry solutions will be available, for WorldSSP class. For the front, in addition to the standard SC1 and SC2, the V0533 development SC1 will be back on the stage. This solution, which made its début in 2016 in Lausitzring and which has also been used in Magny-Cours, Jerez and Losail and in the first two rounds of the 2017 season, is positioned, in terms of compound, approximately in between an SC1 and an SC2 compound. For the rear, the riders will have the chance to choose between the standard SC0 and the V1201 development SC1, already brought to Motorland Aragón and to Assen. This last solution features the same compound as the standard SC1 and should be able to ensure better mechanical resistance in case of low temperatures.
Pirelli’s 2016 statistics for Imola • Total number of tyres Pirelli brought: 4602 • Number of solutions (dry, intermediate and wet) for the WorldSBK class: 5 front and 6 rear • Number of tyres available for each WorldSBK rider: 34 front and 34 rear • Number of solutions for the WorldSSP class (dry, intermediate and wet): 5 front and 4 rear • Number of tyres available for each WorldSSP rider: 24 front and 21 rear • Superbike Best Lap Awards won both by: Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing-Ducati)in 1'46.700 (Race 1, 3rd lap) and in 1'47.240 (Race 2, 6th lap) • Supersport Best Lap Award won by: Jules Cluzel (MV Agusta Reparto Corse),in 1'51.966 at the 9th lap from the restart • Temperature in Race 1: air 20° C, asphalt 32° C • Temperature in Race 2: air 16° C, asphalt 23° C • Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Superbike tyres: 292.2 km/h, by Kawasaki Racing Team riders Jonathan Rea, at 7th and 18th lap, and Tom Sykes, at 17th lap • Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Rain tyres in Supersport race: 258.6 km/h, by Lorenzo Zanetti (MV Agusta Reparto Corse) at 6th lap from the race restart.