DENVER (Aug. 30, 2002)—Taking advantage of the attention generated by the inaugural Shell Grand Prix through the streets of Denver, Bridgestone/Firestone is staging a three-day winter tire testing event Aug. 30 to Sept. 1 in Denver's Pepsi Center skating rink.
While outside the Pepsi Center some of the world´s fastest race cars are going through their paces on Bridgestone Potenza racing tires, inside Bridgestone/Firestone will be giving local tire dealers and race fans the chance to test Bridgestone Blizzak winter tires on the center's ice rink. Drivers can evaluate starting, stopping and cornering performance of tires using cars on wet ice.
“With winter approaching as quickly as a Champ car, we thought the Denver race fans would also enjoy seeing how Bridgestone performs on the slick surface of an ice rink," said Bridgestone Motorsport Executive Director Al Speyer.
Denver-area Bridgestone/Firestone retailers will have an opportunity to test these tires both Friday and Saturday, while consumers can either evaluate the tires themselves or witness demonstrations of their performance. Consumers are admitted free-of-charge on Friday to the testing event with a pass they can obtain at participating Bridgestone/Firestone retail stores.
Some of the drivers participating in the Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) event were expected to take part in the ice rink festivities on the evening of the 30th.
On Saturday and Sunday, consumer's must have a race ticket to participate.
The Pepsi Center´s ice rink — home to the National Hockey League's Colorado Avalanche —will become a temporary test track for automobiles fitted with Bridgestone Blizzak tires and, for comparison purposes, all-season radials.
BFS will use instructors from its Bridgestone Winter Driving School in Steamboat Springs, Colo., to oversee the event and explain winter tire technology.
“With so many states now eliminating or restricting the use of studded snow tires,” said Phil Pacsi, Bridgestone/Firestone executive director of consumer tire marketing, “the studless Blizzak tires have become more popular. They offer outstanding snow and ice performance without studs, thanks to a variety of innovative Bridgestone technologies."
The Bridgestone Blizzak WS-50, known as "The Winter Biter," will be the focal point of the Denver ice rink demonstration. It features zigzag sipes in the tread area that provide effective gripping edges and also help with water drainage. The Blizzak WS-50 is available in 13- through 17-inch sizes to fit many cars and some light trucks.
The Shell Grand Prix of Denver is the 14th race in this year's 19-race CART FedEx championship. Bridgestone is the official tire supplier to the CART series.