Sole MotoGP tyre manufacturer Bridgestone have, by virtue of their privileged position, little on which to compare themselves against in 2009. However, the company have refused to stand still on development. Average race pace and -in the case of Sunday’s Spanish race- Valentino Rossi’s winning race time have been the data to analyse and aim to beat at the opening three races.
Despite concerns expressed by some riders about the softness of even the harder compound choice, the Jerez showdown was a quicker outing for eventual victor Rossi than it was for 2008 racewinner Dani Pedrosa. Manager of Race Tyre Development Tohru Ubukata hailed the progress made with the current rubber options, and its ability to hold up to some demanding conditions.
"The hard front and medium rear Bridgestone combination performed well today and we saw very good consistency over the race distance, with the hottest track temperature we have seen this weekend," said the Japanese chief.
"The winning race time this year was seventeen seconds faster than last year and the consistency was better, so I am happy. This situation clearly shows the wider operating range and improved consistency of this year’s one-make Bridgestone tyres."