Pirellis reports fine performance of its racing tires under cold conditions during Daytona test runs

Jan. 1, 2020
Pirelli says it achieved yet another impressive performance of its 2008 line of P Zero racing tires during this season?s chilly final on-track appearance at the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series.

Pirelli says it achieved yet another impressive performance of its 2008 line of P Zero racing tires during this season’s chilly final on-track appearance at the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series.

The weather at Daytona International Speedway was uncharacteristically cold Oct. 27-29 for three days of testing, which presented new challenges for the tires.

New 2009 P Zeros will debut in another test session at Daytona in less than two weeks, but that did not deter a strong contingent of Rolex Series regulars and several new teams from taking some fast and final laps on the 2008 tires.

Competitors in both the Daytona Prototype and GT divisions expected strong performance at Daytona from the P Zeros, but did not anticipate the unseasonably cold temperatures that hit the central Florida area during the tests. The coldest conditions were experienced when a morning session was run in temperatures dipping to the mid-40s. These were some of the coldest daytime running conditions Pirelli encountered all year, but the company says the tires still ran at peak performance.

“The Pirellis have been good all year, even in extremely hot conditions, and this morning there was really no difference in the cold,” said Brumos Porsche Riley driver Jaoa Barbosa just after finishing. “We didn’t have any issues with the tires and the Pirellis performed really well even when the track was very cold. We were still able to develop the car and follow our program, so the tires held up really good, even in cold conditions.”

Barbosa drove both the No. 58 and No. 59 Brumos Porsche Rileys with teammates Darren Law and JC France. The Brumos squad was one of several Daytona Prototype teams that shared the track with a contingent of GT class race cars, including one Porsche GT3 owner who even did some driving of his own. Kevin Buckler was part of the overall winning team in the 2003 Rolex 24. At Daytona last week in his TRG Porsche, he drove a few laps and liked how the tires performed.

“The Pirellis were absolutely flawless,” Buckler said. “The tires stuck like glue and were good right out of the box. I ran on old tires all Tuesday morning and all day Monday and we were turning just about the same lap times as when we put sticker tires on. The tires rock, even in the cold temperatures. The car feels today as good as it has ever felt on the track. It is just solid and the Pirellis are solid.”

The debut test of the 2009 P Zeros will take place at Daytona Nov. 11-12, and all of the top Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series Daytona Prototype and GT teams are expected to participate. The two-day session will end Pirelli’s official on-track activity for 2008, but next year’s schedule will pick up immediately in 2009 when the Rolex Series returns to “The World Center of Racing” on New Year’s Day for Rolex 24 Daytona Test Days. Paddock move-in will be the only activity on the holiday, but teams will take to the track for three days of testing beginning Friday, Jan. 2. The season-opening 47th Annual Rolex 24 at Daytona will begin on Thursday, Jan. 22, with the actual around-the-clock race taking place on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 24-25.

For more information please visit www.us.pirelli.com.

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