Dani Pedrosa blasts front tyre change

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Dani Pedrosa has launched a scathing attack on the decision to introduce a new softer construction Bridgestone front tyre from the British Grand Prix onwards.

Pedrosa and Repsol Honda team-mate Casey Stoner are the only two struggling to make the new softer front tyre work having encountered an issue with braking stability.

A limited number of the new front tyre was made available for the Jerez, Estoril, Le Mans and Catalunya rounds but it will be the only spec available from Silverstone onwards.

The move has infuriated Pedrosa, who voiced his anger after testing the new softer construction front tyre again yesterday at Catalunya.

The Spaniard branded the decision ‘unsafe and unfair’ and hit out at Dorna for agreeing to implement the mid-season switch when nobody had complained about the performance or safety of the older spec front.

Pedrosa, who finished second in Sunday’s Catalunya race, told MCN: “I have been trying the new front tyre a lot today and I was hoping to improve and we did a little bit but it is only small compared to what we used to have or what we used to need to go fast. This new tyre is even worse in some places because now we have chatter on the front a lot. We used to have it on the rear on the exit of the corner but now we have it even on the entry. It is so hard to manage this bike with so much chatter everywhere in every corner. For us riding this tyre puts you on the limit and it is on the limit of safety also because when you go in on the brakes everything is moving with lots of chatter and I feel it is a very unfair situation for Honda. They said this is always a safety issue to make the change but I feel it is only fair for some. I don’t think it is a fair situation for the championship to say from now on, with little testing, that we change the tyres in the middle of the season. I didn’t hear from any other rider that the standard tyre was an issue. Then they tried this new tyre and it was a better feeling and so they preferred it because it is better but not because it is safer. Obviously having both tyres or just the standard would be the most fair situation.”

Pedrosa said he was making his views on the tyre change clear to ‘Bridgestone and the organisers’ and that he agreed with Stoner’s recent criticism of the MotoGP world championship.

One of the prime reasons Stoner is retiring at the end of 2012 is because the Australian is fed-up of constant tampering with the rules.

And Pedrosa said: “I must agree with Casey about the championship and there are many things that are not very clear here.”

Asked by MCN if he felt the front tyre switch could damage his world title prospects, Pedrosa added: “Obviously I am angry about this situation and how it has been done. It is mid-season and out of two tyres possible they choose the one that is worse but you are obliged to use it and you can’t do anything else. I must keep my mind open and keep my belief and stay positive because if I keep thinking about this then I will not get any success.”

With none of the new spec front tyres available to test tomorrow at the Motorland Aragon track, HRC has decided not to attend.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt