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Doing The Maths On Tyre Performance
In a week where longevity is a hot topic, numbers illustrate Dunlop’s success at Le Mans this year. It was a year that saw new advances and developments help Dunlop customers improve performance on both the competition and previous years. In F1, we are used to seeing tyres changed at every pitstop, but at Le Mans the teams can pit two or three times for fuel (and even a driver change) but don't need to change tyres. In F1 the whole race takes place over around 310km on several sets of tyres compared to Le Mans 2013 where Dunlop teams frequently quadruple stinted with one set of tyres lasting 44 laps of the 13.629km track - nearly twice a full Formula One Grand Prix distance at a total just short of 600km.
Dunlop Achievements For 2013 Le Mans 24 Hours – LMP2 finishers:
- The top three teams all ran on Dunlop tyres as did five out of the top six finishers
- Cars on Dunlop tyres led 326 laps of the 329 lap race
- The top eleven fastest driver laps in the whole event, in eight different cars, were on Dunlop tyres
- The ten fastest race laps were on Dunlop tyres from seven different cars
- Of the five cars that had fewer than 30 pit-stops, four were on Dunlop tyres
- The car with the fewest pit-stops was the #42 Greaves Motorsport entry which stopped just 28 times
- The fastest race lap was set by Olivier Pla in the #24 Oak Racing car. His time of 3:38.059 was 2.85 seconds faster than the fastest competitor lap.
- Eight different fastest lap times were set by five different drivers throughout the race, all on Dunlop tyres
- The Dunlop intermediate tyre was double stinted for the first time ever in the race by two different teams
- Dunlop teams quadruple stinted the soft and medium compound tyres without problems
- The fastest LMP2 lap time was over seven-tenths of a second faster than the 2012 fastest LMP2 lap (0.4%)
- In terms of fastest laps, of the top ten finishers the seven Dunlop-shod teams in both the 2012 and 2013 races all improved their lap times compared to last year, and the one non-Dunlop car was 1.35 slower than in 2012 when it was running on Dunlop tyres
- In terms of fastest laps, the two cars running on competitor tyres that competed last year on Dunlop both set fastest times that were slower than their Dunlop 2012 times
Jean-Felix Bazelin, General Manager Dunlop Motorsport Europe stated:
"Looking through the Le Mans data shows the progress that we have made. There were several firsts including double stinting the intermediate tyre and quadruple stinting the soft compound which are big advances for endurance racing. Our hard work on our wet and intermediate compounds really paid off and was a big factor in the very mixed conditions. The pace our teams showed and the ability to triple and quadruple stint the tyres with ease shows how much the tyres have progressed in the last few years yet times are getting faster. The important thing for us is to continue the developments and stay ahead of the competition."