Moto2 riders will have a new solution available as of the Jerez GP in the shape of a new extra large rear tyre. During winter testing, the riders already had change to try this new solution, but the Dunlop technicians preferred to wait for the first of the European rounds before introducing it.
The new tyre is a 200/75R17 and replaces the previous one (195/75R17).
"The 2018 tyre has proven to be more than capable of meeting the performance of the new bikes - explains Stephen Bickley, Dunlop's Senior Race Engineer - By using it in the opening rounds, the Dunlop technical team was able to collect information and establish how the new bikes impact the tyre performance, checking if more heat was being generated giving us valuable data for the larger 2019 rear tyre."
"The 200/75R17 is a physically larger tyre than the 195/75R17, increasing in diameter by over 10mm. This provides improved traction in both longitudinal and lateral directions - he continues - The stability of the Moto2 tyres was a highly-regarded attribute, and riders tell us we’ve actually improved on this with the new shape, carefully controlling the stiffness of the tyres at all lean angles."
This will not be the only new element in Spain, as the Dunlop technicians have also decided to bring tyres with a harder compound than in the past, as they anticipate a more abrasive track as a result of recent resurfacing.
Moto3 riders won't feel left out either, as they get two new rear tyres (one soft known as S2 and one hard, H4) which should offer better performance.
“Testing has shown that the Soft tyre could be quicker in the opening laps of the race with a fast warm-up time, but in the closing stages the Hard may be the quicker tyre. Both tyres are capable of performing consistently over a race distance, but the difference in characteristics will bring an additional factor into planning a race gameplan.” explains Gary Purdy, the engineer who heads up the Moto3 programme.