Bridgestone Produces Limited Edition F1 Snow Tire for St. Moritz White Turf Demonstration Run


Last Winter, Bridgestone Motorsport produced a special Limited Edition F1 Potenza snow tire at the request of the BMW Sauber F1 Team which have been conducting a demonstration run of their F1.06 car at the prestigious White Turf horse racing event in St.Moritz, Switzerland.

The BMW Sauber F1 Team was running the car at the request of team sponsor Credit Suisse, who are main sponsors and partners of the event which is this year celebrating 100 years of international horse racing in St.Moritz.

Due to the extreme conditions in which the BMW Sauber F1.06 ran, the special F1 snow tires, produced by Bridgestone Motorsport's Technical Centre in Tokyo, featured 420 studs on each of the front tires and 588 studs on each of the rear tires. It took two Bridgestone technicians over 16 hours to manually insert all 2016 studs into the double layer of tread compound on one set of tires alone. Similarly, the horses racing on the frozen lake at St. Moritz will also have four studs and a rubber plate attached to each of their front and rear hoofs.

Made from tungsten and embedded in aluminium casings, Bridgestone's tire studs have been designed to specifically provide reliable grip on ice and hard-packed snow.

A similar set of tires was also produced for the Scuderia Ferrari F1 team for their pre-season event on the slopes of Madonna di Campiglio in Italy.

By utilizing the tread design of Bridgestone's Potenza F1 extreme weather tires, the irregular placement of the studs in the tire tread blocks is intended to maximize performance of each stud in the harsh conditions. In reverse to the policy of transferring technology from F1 tire development to road car tires, Bridgestone has transferred its knowledge of road car winter tire tread compounds to the F1 snow tires, using a soft, high-grip compound which will enable the tires to work at a much lower working temperature range to that normally experienced by a tire on a race circuit.

The Bridgestone Corporation manufactures both studded and studless road tires for use by the general consumer. The Bridgestone Noranza studded tire provides exceptional grip on the ice, without sacrificing comfort, handling and quietness and with its irregular placed aluminium studs was instrumental in the philosophy behind the Limited Edition Bridgestone Potenza F1 snow tire.

The studless Blizzak LM20 uses a compound with high silica content, similar to that chosen for the Bridgestone Potenza F1 snow tire.

White Turf
On the first three Sundays in February, St. Moritz plays host to White Turf, the international horse races staged on snow and ice. This fascinating event, set against the stunning backdrop of the Engadine mountains, celebrated its 100th anniversary since the international horse races first took place on the frozen Lake of St. Moritz in 1907. Several types of horse racing are featured at White Turf including the familiar racing of galloping horses with jockeys onboard and the fast paced trotting races with horses pulling lightweight racing sulkies in which the jockeys sit. However, it is the Skikjöring event, which is exclusive to White Turf, which is a particular favourite with spectators. The drivers, on skis, are pulled over the 2700 m racetrack by riderless thoroughbreds at speeds of up to 50 km/h. Courage, stamina, strength and skiing skills decide who will gain the highest number of points on the three racing Sundays and be crowned "King of the Engadine".

Source: Bridgestone Motorsport

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