“Perhaps the biggest change for this year is that we have utilised our existing extra-soft rubber compound to create a range of soft rear slicks purely for the CRT entries, providing them with a more suitable rear tyre allocation for races.
“We have also continued development of a new hard rubber compound that will bring this option closer to the medium rubber compound and make the harder option rear slicks a more desirable option among the works machines.”
So like last year, Bridgestone will offer the same specification of tyre to all the bikes on the grid, but for this season there will be a split in the compound choices available to CRT and works bikes?
“Yes the construction of all the tyres for the 2013 season will remain the same, only the compounds available to each specification of machine will differ. For this year there will be up to three rear slick options available for each race, with the CRT entries being able to select the softer and medium rear option, while the works bikes will select from the medium and harder options.
“We believe there is no need to develop a specific tyre construction for CRT entries as our feedback from riders on these bikes is that the feel and behaviour of the tyres is excellent. However, we did have some CRT riders request a softer option of rear slick so we will be using our softer rubber compounds to make rear slick options that better suit these less powerful machines.
“This decision is also verified by the data from last year which showed that CRT riders didn't select the harder rear option for the race very often, so after discussions with Dorna and the FIM it was clear that the most logical solution was to make separate tyre choices available for works and CRT bikes.”
Are there any other changes to the tyre supply for MotoGP in 2013?
“From a development perspective there won't be any other changes, however, there will be a revision to the front and rear slick allocation to give riders greater flexibility when selecting their tyres for the race weekend.
“In response to the increase in practice and qualifying sessions this season, each rider will be granted one extra rear slick tyre in their allocation, bringing the total up to eleven rear slicks per rider.
“Also, a slight change has been made to the front tyre allocation, with the extra-soft front option that was previously available but never used being dropped, allowing for riders to choose a greater number of front tyres from the regular softer and harder options specified for each race.
“This revision to the front tyre supply is being implemented following feedback we had from riders last year – they are very happy with our current generation of front slick but want the ability to select a greater number of the specification of tyre they are more likely to use in a race setting.”
From a personal perspective, what are you expecting for the upcoming season?