Monday April 23rd, 2001
Bridgestone's technical manager Hisao Suganuma has predicted that the introduction of traction control at this weekend's Grand Prix in Spain will actually slow the Formula One cars.
Suganuma believes the new system, which restrict the power input to the rear tyres to prevent wheelspin if too many revs are selected when exiting a corner, may not be as useful as people believe.
"The limiting of power one gets with traction control may mean that lap times grow so drivers will not want to rely on it too much if they are to make the most of the extra grip," said Suganuma.
"It is difficult to say how much we can expect from the new system," he continued. "But the introduction of traction control should help prevent rear wheel sliding and therefore reduce degradation on the rear tyres."
However, that in itself means that softer tyres could be used without the concerns over rapid deterioration of their grip levels, and could eventually help the tyre war move another step forward and make the cars faster still.