Lotus concerned by tire choices for Britain, Hungary

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Lotus F1 Team’s motorsport director Alan Permane has criticized Pirelli’s choice of tires for the British and Hungarian Grands Prix, believing that the compounds chosen will be too conservative for Silverstone and the Hungaroring respectively.

Pirelli confirmed earlier this week that they would be bringing the two hardest compounds (hard and medium) to the races, causing Permane some confusion after the wear patterns witnessed at last year’s races.

It’s unusual to take the same tires to Hungary as to Bahrain and Silverstone,” he told the BBC.

“We didn’t have those tires last year. We had medium and soft last year and people did two stops. So it absolutely doesn’t make sense – they’re too hard for that track.”

The BBC also reports that team principal Eric Boullier will be speaking to Pirelli over its choice of compounds.

Lotus have not spoken out against Pirelli over the 2013 tire design (which has sparked a protest from world champions Red Bull), with the British team appearing to manage their tires better than most, often differing their strategy as a result.

The Canadian GP appeared to see a return to the ‘regular’ number of pit stops, with most drivers stopping twice whilst still being able to push during their stints. However, you can expect the critics to emerge once again should these races become processional one-stop races.

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.