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Italian prototypes race with yokohama



Yokohama has been chosen, once again, as the sole tire supplier for the upcoming Italian Sport Prototype Championship, dedicated to gritty single-seaters powered by Aprilia  

Duilio Damiani

Spectacular, adrenaline-filled performance by single-seater prototypes ready to compete, once again, in this year’s new and exciting Italian championship.

This is the Italian Sport Prototypes Championship, dedicated to single-seaters, which represents one of the most important stepping stones towards greater things, as well as the ideal meeting place for drivers who decide to call this championship home, allowing the fastest among them to enjoy a rewarding career, an opinion shared by all the drivers, new and old alike, ready to floor it on May 5 at the circuit of Vallelunga, at the start of the 2019 season.

The CISP championship, a one-make racing series courtesy of a couple of dozen high-performance Wolf GB08 made in Italy by Avelon Formula and used in a variety of versions and engines in many international championships, represents the perfect spring board for many towards a satisfying professional career. As far as the tires used, the teams can rely on Yokohama as the sole supplier ( until 2022) and its proven A005 and A006, slick and rain, size 200/50 VR13 at the front and 240/45 VR13 at the rear, the same used also in the Japanese Formula 3 Championship.


Crossing the Atlantic

To well informed enthusiasts, the name Wolf will probably ring a bell. Created in 1976 by Canadian Walter Wolf, soon became a familiar sight on the Formula 1 starting grids with its characteristic black and gold colours, alternating drivers such as Jody Scheckter, Jacky Ickx, Chris Amon and Arturo Merzario at the wheel, able to clinch 3 first places and several podiums. The F1 dream, however, was short-lived, and the team withdrew from competition four years later. After a long period in stand-by, Italy’s Avelon Formula, a creation of motor racing champion Giovanni Bellarosa, rekindled the dream, and in 2009 embarked on a rather ambitious project taking the name Wolf back out of the closet.

This is how the GB08 was born, an E2SS class Prototype Racer, at first powered by a 2-litre Honda engine, and now, in its latest evolution by a 200 hp Aprilia RSV4 1 litre motorcycle derived engine, with a six-speed sequential gearbox.

Following the technical specs set by Csai (Italian Racing Commission) after the 2018 debut season, about twenty Wolf GB08 Thunder will take part in the 2019 season, ready to put on a great show, thanks to the performance of these fast yet easy to drive racers weighing only 378 kg (with the driver on board according to regulation 470) and a mechanical layout that includes a push-rod front suspension with Oram mono dumper and adjustable rear differential. An injection of technology, despite affordable costs, taking the drivers into a dimension not entirely different from a Formula 1 car. Due to these characteristics, the Wolf GB08 is appreciated on all international circuits, prompting an increasing number of teams to take up the challenge, as evidenced by orders coming from all over the continent, which Avelon Formula ( caters for thanks to a well tested production division and a widespread distribution network.


From racing to road use

The choice of tires, supplied by Yokohama’s Italian subsidiary, engaged in Prototype racing for the first time, fell on two appreciated models: the multiple championship-winning A005 slick, and A006 rain, the result of ground-breaking manufacturing technologies.

Their sturdy structure and light weight (20% less than a road tire), with a nylon and steel casing able to guarantee greater flexibility despite the weight reduction, are finally assembled with a compound designed to achieve maximum performance in terms of grip and even wear, despite being constantly subjected to huge lateral forces. Suffice to say that after just a few laps, the tires reach 100 °C (200°C near the bead), impossible conditions for an average road tire, and therefore proves an invaluable test bench for the most advanced technical solutions. 

Absolutely specific to competitions and not to be found on normal road traffic, the Race series gained its know-how from gruelling motorsports events and inspired Yokohama’s latest, the street-legal Advan A052, which takes the place of the A048. Intended for a predominantly sporty user, the Advan A052 represents a purely emotional answer to the demand for maximum performance, both on and off the track. Featuring an all-new asymmetric tread pattern that has two wide inner circumferential grooves on the inside to enhance straight-line stability, a high rigidity tread rib on the outside to deliver powerful cornering capability with a straight thin groove that efficiently dissipates heat and provide adequate drainage. In this configuration, the wide and consistent footprint ensuring maximum grip even when taking corners at high speeds, thanks to a rather solid and stress resistant shoulder. The Advan A052 is currently available in a multitude of sizes ranging from 14 to 20 inches.

Leaving all kinds of extremism behind, the crown jewel of Yokohama’s road production is undoubtedly the Advan Sport V105, a much-appreciated Summer Ultra High Performance tire dedicated to mid-sized and luxury high performance cars.

Already a popular option among many and adopted as original equipment by some of the most prestigious luxury sedans and SUVs, the V105 is a tire able to meet a wide demand on the replacement market, and comes in a significantly large size ranging from 16 and to 23 inches. Furthermore, Yokohama developed the Advan Sport V105 with Martix Rayon Body Ply, to enhance its tire's steering precision - thanks to improved rigidity, and guarantee high stability both in a straight line and through corners even at a brisk pace. An asymmetric, variable pitch design with wide drainage grooves go a long way in ensuring a more than adequate grip in both dry and wet conditions, while the eco-friendly compound combines micro-silica components with orange peel oil to replace the aromatic additives, as shown by the BluEarth logo on the sidewall.

Whether on the road or on the track, Yokohama's participation in The Italian Sports Prototype Championship also confirms its competitive DNA, offering solutions in line with the expectations of its most dynamic customers.


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