All V8 Supercars use a ‘control’ tyre specifically designed for the category by Dunlop – the SP Sport 280/680 R18 tyre. Two slick tyres comprising of hard and soft compounds are used at different times throughout the year, while a grooved option control tyre is also available in wet weather conditions.
The soft tyre compound offers more grip, faster cornering speeds and lower lap times, but doesn’t have the same durability as the hard compound. While the hard compound is longer lasting, it doesn’t provide the same levels of grip as the soft tyre.
Each year the tyre regulations are reviewed and for 2015, with the V8 Supercars Commission still targeting cost reductions, the total tyre allocation for the season has been cut from 380 tyres to 292. This has been largely achieved through a substantial reduction in the allocation of the soft compound rubber, with the number of soft tyres slashed from 164 in 2014 to just 44 this year. Teams are also no longer required to hand back one set of tyres after Friday’s sessions for use either as pre-marked tyres in subsequent practice sessions or test days, as seen in 2014.
With Saturday’s SuperSprint races each running 60km, V8 Supercars says that the move has been made to “ensure drivers fight the full distance, rather than conserving rubber as seen in some of the 100km runs in 2014.”
There continues to be a split of hard tyre-only, soft tyre-only and mixed tyre events. However, more time will be spent on the hard tyre with nine races over nine events featuring both sets of tyres, up seven from 2014.
Adelaide, Sandown, Bathurst, Phillip Island and Sydney remain as hard tyre only events, with the non-championship round at Albert Park has changed from an all soft to an all-hard tyre event. Having previously been an all-soft compound meeting, just two sets of softs are also available at the Gold Coast 600, both for use only in Sunday’s second 300km encounter.
With the exception of Phillip Island, all SuperSprint events will include a single set of softs, to be used only in Sunday’s race, which remains 200km in length. This includes Tasmania, Winton, Perth and Ipswich formerly soft tyre only rounds, and Auckland previously a hard tyre only round. Just four sets of tyres will be available over the five-stint SuperSprint races, with teams likely to have re-use soft tyres in the Sunday race, as seen in Darwin this year (one stint in each 60km race on Saturday and three in the two-stop 200km Sunday race).
A minimum tyre pressure of 17 psi will continue in 2015 following the V8 Supercars Commission’s decision to mandate the minimum tyre pressure after receiving recommendations from tyre manufacturer Dunlop in September 2014.
2015 Tyre Allocation
|Australian Grand Prix||Non-Championship||12||0||12|
|Sydney Motorsport Park||SuperSprint||12||4||12|
|Surfers Paradise||Enduro Cup||16||8||20|