Sidecars Set for TT Tyre Test

Tuesday August 15, 2023 at 4:30pm
Sidecars Set for TT Tyre Test

A number of leading sidecar teams will take part in a series of tyre tests at the upcoming Manx Grand Prix, following manufacturing changes that will affect the class from 2024.
ACU Events Limited, Race Organiser of the Isle of Man TT Races, have been working in collaboration with representatives from the three-wheeled class since it was announced that Avon Tyres – the tyre brand used by the majority of competitors in recent years – were ceasing production at the end of 2023 after 119-years of operation.
Whilst the sidecar class does not operate with a single-make tyre rule, Avon have been the main brand used in the category for the last 12 years at the Isle of Man TT Races, the FIM Sidecar World Championship, and across other national series. A lack of a ‘control’ tyre has meant that the onus has been on sidecar competitors to find a replacement product, and after discussions with a range of manufacturers by the leading teams, Hoosier Racing Tires have taken on development of a tyre for the class.
Dave Hagen, Technical Director at the Isle of Man TT Races: “It’s unfortunate that such a tried, tested and trusted product is no longer going to be available for the sidecars to use, but as was the case with the introduction of slick tyres for all the solo classes this year, a commercial decision has been made by a manufacturer and so we have to move on and adapt.”
“It’s more difficult in this situation as the outgoing manufacturer was the only tyre available, and so a lot of hard work has gone in to finding another brand to take on the challenge and to develop a replacement product.”
“There’s an argument to say this is the time to engage with a manufacturer and look to introduce a control tyre, but the technical team and the leading competitors are of the opinion that closing the door to other manufacturers would deter them from developing other products, meaning we could end up in a similar situation further down the line.”
“There’s no denying that it’s a big change for the class and it’s vital that the new tyres are up to the rigours of the TT Course, so we’ve worked with Gary [Thompson – Clerk of the Course] and a number of teams on a testing plan which will take place at the 2023 Manx Grand Prix in preparation for TT 2024.”

Four sidecar outfits – Ben and Tom Birchall, Ryan and Callum Crowe, Tim Reeves, and Dave Molyneux – are scheduled to complete a total of 4 laps during this month’s Manx Grand Prix with visual, thermal, and pressure inspections of the new tyres taking place during and after each lap.

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