Kumho Tyres will again supply all the Formula Three runners in this weekend's fifth running of the International Korea F3 Super Prix on the Changwon street circuit as it aims to further strengthen its affiliation with some of the rising stars of single-seater racing.

The Korean race is one of the most important races of the year for the aspiring Formula One drivers as it completes the Asian double-header kicked off by Macau last weekend, and is the second event on the F3 calendar to be fully supplied by Kumho, after the annual Marlboro Masters event in Holland. The company is also the contracted supplier of tyres to the new-for-2003 F3 Euroseries.

"Being appointed as the official tyre supplier for three of four international Formula Three events is very successful for Kumho Tyres this year" said Jae-Suk Cho, the company's general marketing manager.

Leading drivers from the major F3 series praised the Kumho tyres' performance at Zandvoort in August, and Nico Rosberg, son of 1982 F1 world champion Keke Rosberg was particularly vocal, having won on the rubber in the F3 Euroseries this year.

"The tyre has been great this year," the Finn said, "After only a few laps, the Kumhos provide a lot of grip and there is a good balance and a good feeling from the tyre."

Kumho was appointed the sole tyre supplier to the Euroseries at the start of the season, and its ECSTA F3 slicks are expected to give the series' competitors an edge in Korea this weekend. However, the rest of the field does not appear too worried about getting top grip with the rubber this weekend.

British driver Danny Watts - a winner in the Avon-shod UK championship this year - raced the Kumho tyre at the 2003 Marlboro Masters and says it compares as well as any other tyre he has competed on before.

"When I raced at Zandvoort on Kumhos, I found they gave me a lot of grip when they were brand new," the Alan Docking Racing driver said ahead of his reunion with the brand in Changwon, "Then you can do very competitive and fast lap times for many laps without the level of performance dropping off."

Nelson Piquet Jr, like Rosberg the son of a legendary F1 world champion, raced to second place in the Marlboro Masters this year and, like Watts, the Korean F3 Super Prix will be his second chance to race on the Korean tyre.

"They're very good and I'm looking forward to running on them again in the Korean Super Prix," the young Brazilian revealed.

 

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