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Brazil GP: Practice notes - Bridgestone

NEWS STORY
31/10/2008

Fernando Alonso set the marker on the opening day of running for the Brazilian Grand Prix by using Bridgestone's soft compound Potenza tyre to set Friday's fastest lap time at the 4.31km Autódromo José Carlos Pace for the eighteenth and final round of the 2008 FIA Formula One World Championship.

Alonso set his time – a 1min 12.296secs – in the afternoon 90 minute practice session. He was less than a tenth faster than the next driver, Felipe Massa. Jarno Trulli went third fastest.

In the morning session Massa used the medium compound to set the fastest time, a 1min 12.305secs. He was almost two tenths faster than Lewis Hamilton. Massa's team-mate, Kimi Raikkonen, was third fastest in this session.

The first day of running at Interlagos held no surprises and the track delivered no tricks or treats. Cloudy and cool conditions featured all day, and there was even some light rain during the afternoon session. Today was the first time that Bridgestone's medium compound Potenza tyre has been used here, as the soft and super soft tyres were allocated for this event last season.

Today's fastest lap time was almost half a second faster than the best Friday time set last year, a 1min 12.767secs, set by Lewis Hamilton in FP2.

Hirohide Hamashima - Bridgestone Director of Motorsport Tyre Development: Today was very much a standard first day of practice. The cars are much quicker compared with last year's Friday running, however we have seen a lot of graining, especially with the soft tyre, but also with the medium tyre too. This graining has an effect on the degradation of the tyres, but tomorrow we hope that the circuit surface is improved which will mean better consistency. The amount of graining we have seen shows us that changing the tyre allocation a step harder was correct though. If we had brought the soft and super soft tyres, as we used last season, the graining and degradation would have been far worse. Of course, the weather is often a challenge here in Brazil and today has been very cool, but we saw similar conditions last year on Friday, only for Sunday's race to be very hot.

  • To check out our Brazil practice gallery, click here
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