Pirelli training for BRC crews
With the MSA British Rally Championship swapping from gravel to asphalt for the first time in 2009, tyre choice, cutting and the quest to keep tyre in contact with road takes on a whole new dimension on the Jim Clark International Rally. Pirelli, the control tyre supplier for the British Rally Championship, is providing training for drivers and teams in advance of the rally, giving guidance to how best to cut the tyres as well as general tips on how to get the best performance.

The Pirelli control tyre format within the British Rally Championship means that the choice and number of tyres is limited. At the sharp end of the title fight, the 18” wheel is most common. This gives the top runners a choice of three patterns; a moulded slick for dry weather, a full wet pattern for torrential rain and standing water, with an intermediate pattern for those in-between conditions.

The trick that all drivers want to pull off is that of being on the best rubber at all times, a difficult choice to make in changing conditions. As the Jim Clark Rally has been known for weather that can change in an instant, up to the minute forecasts from the stages are commonplace.

In dry conditions the moulded slick provides maximum rubber contact, therefore maximum grip, but when it is damp, the choice becomes more difficult. Whilst the control tyre does not permit any different choice of compound, cutting of the tyres is allowed and knowledge of correct tyre pressures is also an advantage. The ultimate decision always rests with the driver, so experience scores highly on the road to grip, but often a combination works best in these conditions.

“Following on from our successful Pace Note training session ahead of the recent Pirelli Rally, we decided to host a number of further “interest” briefings. These are aimed at our growing field of Juniors, but the sessions are open to all registered competitors and teams.” said Championship Manager Mark Taylor.

The Jim Clark International Rally is the third round of the 2009 MSA British Rally Championship and takes place on Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd May, just over two weeks away.

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