Race Tyre Bedding-in Procedure

March 2021

Author: STUCKERN/Thursday, March 18, 2021/Categories: Technical Information

A question often asked about competition tyres is: "What is the correct bedding in procedure?"

The answer is quite simple. When a new tyre is first run at race speed, whether slick or treaded, the tread temperature (and therefore the inflation pressure) will increase more than normal. The normal operating temperature for a race tyre is between 60 and 110 degrees C, but at over this range the compound will break down chemically, forming a 'blister'. If this happens in a qualifying situation where the driver may continue trying to improve his times, there is a risk that overheating the tyre may occur. At the very worst that will result in causing a heat blister, but also may permanently affect the tread compounds performance. It is for this reason that the general advice is to bed a tyre in gently the day before it is to be used in anger. this has the effect of avoiding the possibility of this 'heat spike', whilst confirming balance etc.

However a tyre's best performance will always be in the first 3 laps of its life, so in circumstances where overheating is unlikely, 'green' tyres can be used for qualifying or race. This is common at the highest levels of International motorsport such as F1 where 'green' tyres are used for qualifying, and then for the race.

There is a growing fashion to 'condition' tyres by heating them artificially, which is claimed to stabilise compound performance and eliminate the need for this bedding procedure. However this does not improve performance, and those precious few 10ths are lost.

In summary, careful bedding in a race tyre the day before it is to be used in anger will not improve its performance. It will only eliminate the risk of damaging the tyre.

For all technical information re applications and compounds please contact us.


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