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02 maggio 2011

Valentino Rossi

Bridgestone’s Battlax BT-016 PRO Hypersport tyre is clearly making in-roads, not only with its predecessors but also with the competition. In German motorcycling magazine PS’s 2011 sport tyre review, it pipped an impressive line-up of the world’s top sport tyres to take the podium, thanks mainly to its outstanding wet-weather handling and balanced performance on a dry track. 

Held in collaboration with its sister magazine, Motorrad, PS’s extensive tests are recorded with a 2D recording system on both a dry and wet track. The dry test comprises a total of 3050 metres of smooth, dry tack along with flowing bends, swift changes of direction and tight curves: “an ideal terrain for the sport tyre test.” The wet test track is quite long at 1623 meters. Built on a slope, it soon separates the men from the boys in the wet since it also includes several outward-tilting curves. 

In addition to the expert riders’ subjective review, points were also awarded on the basis of objective data such as braking distances and lap times. Why the emphasis on lap times, you ask? “Nothing’s more important for us than the contact with the road. [Lap times] provide a reliable statement because the better the feedback, the more precision, the higher the grip level, the broader the threshold range and the more gradual its onset, the more secure the rider feels and the faster he rides.” In other words, speed is a good indicator of all-round performance. 

The BT-016 PRO scored extremely well on the dry surface, giving “a very harmonious impression.” However, the tyre really came into its own on the wet track, leaving the rest of the field for dead: “The Bridgestone BT-016 PRO gave us a huge surprise in the wet test.” Indeed, the BT-016 PRO recorded the fastest lap time and the shortest braking distance from 100 km/h (48.2 metres). In the words of Robert Glück, PS reviewer: 

“High-end grip is great, of course, but personally I prefer balanced tyres such as the BT-016 PRO. … Simply because they always function well, not merely when it’s warm and sunny out.” 

PS’s conclusion? “Bravo! The BT-016 PRO now feels right at home in water. Top of the line!”

Translation and summary of the article "Kleb Stoff", published in the German magazine PS, Issue 5/2011.