Firestone previews Sonoma IndyCar race

Race Distance: 196.35 miles/315.9 kilometers (85 laps on the 2.31-mile/3.717-km permanent road course).

Television/Radio Broadcast: Live – Sunday, August 26, at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network, IMS Radio Network, Sirius Radio 212 and XM Radio 94.

Firestone Firehawk Race Tires Supplied:
* Primary (black-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 708, each entry receives six sets (24 total tires);
* Alternate (red-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 354, each entry receives three sets (12 total tires);
* Wet-condition (rain) tires with grooved tread pattern: 452, each entry has five sets of Firestone's new rain tire available this weekend.

The Sonoma primary and alternate tire specifications were previously used earlier this season at Barber Motorsports Park. Per IndyCar Series regulations since 2009, Firestone supplies the primary (black-sidewall) and alternate (red-sidewall) tire specs for road- and street-course race weekends. All cars must use at least one set of primary tires and one new alternate set during the race, each for a minimum of two green-flag laps. Otherwise, teams are free to use their allotment as they see fit for the weekend, though each car is limited to one set of tires (team choice of primary or alternate) for each qualifying segment.

Both Firehawk dry-tire specs utilize the same tire construction, but the alternate possesses a softer tread compound to provide more grip and faster lap times while trading off compound durability in exchange for those shorter-term advantages.

Firestone also has available this weekend its new wet tire specification that debuted in June at Detroit. The tread pattern design of the new rain tire is inspired by the Firestone Firehawk Wide Oval Indy 500 passenger-car tire.

From Al Speyer, Executive Director, Firestone Racing: "We're down to crunch time now with only three races left in the IZOD IndyCar Series season, and it will be a great diverse challenge for the drivers as we'll visit a permanent road course, a temporary street circuit, and a superspeedway. It's amazing that there are still fifteen drivers mathematically eligible for the championship – that's a testament to the hard work and talent of the drivers and teams, the performance of the new Dallara DW 12 chassis, the engine competition, and the revised Firestone Firehawk tires for this season. The primary and alternate tires that our engineers are bringing to Sonoma are the same specifications employed earlier this year at Barber Motorsports Park, which produced one of the more exciting races this season and certainly the most passing we've seen on that particular track. We commend IndyCar and the Raceway in Sonoma for modifying their track to increase passing opportunities, and we expect a great race on Sunday."

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