Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton won a thrilling mixed weather Belgian Grand Prix by using a soft hard intermediate tyre strategy at Spa.
Two safety car periods occurred during the course of the 44 lap race in the Belgian Ardennes forests with numerous incidents taking place throughout the field. Hamilton won after making a great start and surviving a gravel excursion whilst on dry tyres on an increasingly wet track. Red Bull Racings Mark Webber finished second and Renault F1 Teams Robert Kubica finished third.
Hiroshi Yasukawa Director of Bridgestone Motorsport, says
Once more Spa Francorchamps has provided us with typically difficult weather conditions which gave us a very exciting race. We saw many spectators brave the wet conditions all weekend and they were rewarded with fantastic action. Bridgestones brand awareness in Europe has been expanded enormously by our participation in Formula 1 over the past 14 years. This was the home Grand Prix for Bridgestone Europe, who are based in Brussels, so we thank them for hosting Bridgestone Motorsport for a final time here in Spa.
Hirohide Hamashima – Bridgestone Director of Motorsport Tyre Development, says
The Spa weather gave us a very difficult situation, even for our last visit here. This was a very tough day for those on track and those on the pit wall. Spa has such a long lap that you cannot be on the correct tyre for an entire lap as the conditions can vary from very wet to damp to dry over the undulating 7 km of this fabulous track . Judging the level of grip, even when you are not on the correct tyre, is a very important aspect of the art of driving a racing car, so it was a pleasure to watch this art in practice. Even the very best drivers in the world can make mistakes in conditions like we had today, and those who were able to minimise their mistakes were able to achieve good results. Congratulations to Lewis for his win, accomplished despite a run through a gravel trap using dry tyres on a wet section of the track. Making a perfect tyre is a very difficult challenge, however the four tyres we had here today covered the range of conditions we experienced admirably and we thank our technicians in Tokyo for their fine efforts to develop such good tyres.
Stats of the Day
Bridgestone Potenza Driver Tyre Strategies
Rd.13 Belgian Grand Prix
In 2010, the tyre regulations stipulate that the two dry tyre specifications must be visibly distinguishable from each other. At the Belgian Grand Prix, the soft (option) compound Bridgestone Potenza tyres were marked with green bands on the sidewalls. The wet weather tyres were also marked with a green line in a central groove.