Pirelli heads to TT Circuit Assen for the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship with some development solutions successfully tested during the official tests in Motorland Aragón
In order to face "TheCathedral of Motorcycling”, Pirelli will supply the most popular development solutions proved during the recent Motorland Aragón test plus the front SC3 anda new wet development rear, in case of rain
|TT Circuit Assen|
Assen (The Netherlands), 24 April 2017- Following the fascinating Spanish round, when Chaz Davies imposed himself in Race 2, interrupting the supremacy of Jonathan Rea and his Kawasaki, and following the official tests which enabled the teams to fine-tune several items for the forthcoming rounds, the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship arrives in the Netherlands for the fourth round of the season.
Riders competing in the production derived World Championship will be racing on the demanding TT Circuit Assen from Friday 28 to Sunday 30 April. For this occasion, Pirelli will be deploying a wide range of solutions which will, in addition to the standard tyres, include some development options proved during the official tests (after Motorland Aragón), which were well appreciated by all riders. In particular, in WorldSBK, in addition to the complete standard range, also two SC1 development solutions will be available for the front. Whereas for the rear, in addition to the soft standard solution, the riders will have the chance to choose between two medium compound development options. Moreover, Pirelli has developed a new rear rain tyre, which might come onto the stage in the event of rainfall at the Dutch track. The innovation for the WorldSSP class, on the other hand, is represented by the new development rear V1201 in medium compound.
Moreover, for the Assen round, WorldSBK riders will again rely on the latest innovation introduced by Pirelli in the Spanish round: the innovative Superpole® tyre, which, in its début, has already enabled riders to set some record times. This qualifying tyre can ensure a minimum of two and up to a maximum of four timed laps, allowing the riders to complete more than one flying lap, therefore having more opportunities to be able to set their best time.
On April the 28th, in addition to the teams and riders of the WorldSBK and WorldSSP, the protagonists of the STK1000 and WorldSSP300 classes will be revving up for Assen. As for the World SSP300 riders, they are currently at their second round following their début on the Motorland Aragón track.
The 2016 edition of the Dutch round, which ended with a spectacular double victory by Northern Irishman Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team), was effected by bad weather, particularly during Race 2, when the Pirelli DIABLO™ Rain tyres were deployed for both WorldSBK and WorldSSP classes.
|TT Circuit Assen|
The TT Circuit Assen, located about 200 km north-east of Amsterdam, was built in 1925 with a very different layout compared to the current one. For the first 30 years, in fact, the track remained open to traffic, hosting races on country roads only occasionally. Only in 1955 the track was closed to traffic and its layout modified, reducing the overall length to 7705 metres. Further changes have been carried out in 2006 and nowadays, following other interventions which took place over the years, the Assen circuit features an overall length of 4.542 metres. With the longest straight of 970 meters, 11 right corners and 6 on the left. In spite of the various interventions, the track has substantially preserved its main features, to begin with the high average speed. It is an historical track, hosting the production derived series since 1992 and is undoubtedly, one of the most demanding track on the calendar, capable of representing a thorough challenge for the riders, bikes and of course for the tyres. It is to such a degree that it is often called “the Cathedral of Motorcycling”. The track’s layout features a sequence of long turns at constant speed, slow hairpins with harsh braking and sudden accelerations, fast chicanes and long turns with strong acceleration at the exit when the bike is still leaning over. It is thus a very varied track where the choice of tyres made by the teams has a strategic relevance. Moreover, another critical issue of the Assen circuit is related to the weather conditions: in the month of April, variable weather conditions with rather cold temperatures are often occurring. Nevertheless, in case of rain, the good drainage capacity of the circuit, together with the particular wind exposure which traditionally characterizes this area, ensures that the track is able to become dry quickly.
With a high bituminous percentage, the asphalt of the circuit has a strong correlation between how aggressive the track is and the external temperature. As a result, with low temperatures, the rear solutions can suffer from problems with tearing, in particular in case of soft solutions and when the track is still poorly rubberised, typically during the Friday sessions.
The solutions for WorldSBK and WorldSSP classes
Pirelli arrives in Assen with a total of 4829 tyres, meeting the needs of riders of the 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 riders will be able to choose from a selection of eight slick solutions, five for the front and three for the rear. For the front the complete standard range, including the soft SC1, medium SC2 and the hard SC3, will be available in addition to two SC1 development solutions. Firstly the brand new V1271, which has been tried by the riders for the very first time during the official tests in Motorland Aragón and which features the same compound as the standard SC1 but with a different manufacturing process, and the V0952, already tried by the riders during the winter tests in Jerez de la Frontera and Portimão and utilised in Aragón for the first European race. This last option features the same compound as the standard SC1 but with different structural solutions. In addition to the soft standard SC0, two medium development solutions will be available for the rear: The W0051, already seen in action in Motorland Aragón and with a different compound compared to the standard solution, gives more uniform wear and a higher mechanical grip, and the V1199, which has been tried for the very first time by the riders during the official tests in Motorland Aragón; features a SC1 compound with specific structural characteristics. As anticipated, in case of rain, WorldSBK riders will also rely on a new wet solution for the rearin addition to the standard one: compared to the 190/60 standard solution, this last one is sized 200/60, which is the same size used for the dry tyres.
For the WorldSSP class there will be five slick solutions: for the front the standard SC1 and SC2, whereas for the rear the riders will be able to choose between the standard SC1 and two development SC1. The V1201, which made its début in Motorland Aragón and which features the same compound as the standard SC1, giving an improved mechanical resistance with low temperatures, and the U0563, which, compared to the standard SC1, has better robustness and an improved resistance to cold tearing, especially in the case of particularly low temperatures.
The 2016 Pirelli statistics for Assen • Total number of tyres Pirelli brought: 4586 • Number of solutions (dry, intermediate and wet) for the WorldSBK class: 6 front and 7 rear • Number of tyres available for each WorldSBK rider: 39 front and 38 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: 23 front and 21 rear • Superbike Best Lap Awards won by: Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing-Ducati)in 1'36.486 (Race 1, 2nd lap) and by Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) in 1'37.706 (Race 2, 20th lap) • Supersport Best Lap Award won by: Kyle Smith (CIA Landlord Insurance Honda),in 1'58.225 at the 6th lap from the restart • Temperature in Race 1: air 12° C, asphalt 19° C • Temperature in Race 2: air 6° C, asphalt 10° C • Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Superbike tyres: 285,8 km/h, by Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) in Race 1 at 15th lap • Maximum race speed reached by Pirelli DIABLO™ Rain tyres in Supersport race: 242 km/h, by Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) at 5th lap