Minardi Get Solution for Tyre Issue

A simple change of procedures during pitstops, rather than a major technical revamp, is likely to ensure that there is no repeat of the valve cap issues that caused both Minardis to suffer tyre failures during the French Grand Prix

Minardi Get Solution for Tyre Issue

Patrick Friesacher and Christijan Albers were both forced out of the race at Magny-Cours after suffering left-rear tyre failures. Examination of the rubber after the race showed that the problems had been caused by the pit crew not re-fitting tyre valve caps during a refuelling stop.

Autosport-Atlas understands that the situation was triggered by a simple communication problem between Minardi and Bridgestone personnel - and that the team member whose job it is to release the car did so before the tyre engineer had finished with his work on the rear tyre.

A Bridgestone spokesman told Autosport-Atlas: "The tyres deflated because the left rear tyre valve caps were not replaced during the pitstops and the air leaked through the valve core.

"Bridgestone monitor the tyre pressures during the pitstops as Minardi do not have tyre pressure sensors. The mistake seems to be procedural rather than technical.  We are working with Minardi to ensure this does not happen again."

A minor change in the procedure of the pitstop, perhaps with a simple signal from the Bridgestone engineers confirming their work is done, is likely to ensure that there is no repeat of the problem in the future.

It is understood that Minardi are the only team that have to check the tyre pressures by actually taking the valve cap off the tyre. Other teams have expensive tyre pressure monitors.

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Series Formula 1
Teams Minardi
Author Jonathan Noble
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