Tyres, something all CSCC categories have in common, be they crossplies, treaded or slicks. Here is a pre-season update on tyres, including a look back to 2023. Thank you for the help given from sponsors Adams & Page.
A Changing Market
The competition tyre industry has changed dramatically since Covid, with a major player, Avon, leaving the market, prices rising and stocks becoming difficult to come by, particularly in the 'less fashionable' smaller diameters. In 2024, supply issues are continuing, with shipping containers held up or diverted in the Middle East, as well as the Panama Canal, many tyre shipments have been delayed and this will continue throughout 2024.
Production cars are now fitted with ever larger diameter tyres. When the time, resources and costs are broadly similar, whether making a 15" or a 19" tyre, you can understand why manufacturers are focussing on the larger, more profitable sizes.
Adams & Page
Official CSCC sponsor, Adams & Page, intend to be at all CSCC rounds, including the pre-season track day and test day. They are stockists of Yokohama, Toyo and Nankang, as well as Kumho and Dunlop Direzza DZ03 in certain sizes.
Contrary to a little confusion recently within a Facebook discussion, we have assurance that they are continuing their CSCC member offer of either: Free carriage to a UK address of your choice.
Or Free fitting and balancing at trackside, on tyres purchased from A & P. Or Free fitting and balancing at their High Wycombe base, including an alignment check using their latest specification alignment bays, handled by their staff who know race cars of all ages.
All three options include scrappage of your old tyres and new valves.
It's worth noting that in addition to competition tyres, they can also supply road tyres of almost any make, for your tow vehicle and trailer too, so why not get them delivered and fitted at the track?
We hope you will forgive the many mentions we are giving to Adams & Page in this article, but they deserve our support. They, together with Yokohama, have been with the CSCC from the very start and have directly contributed monies to help subsidise your racing and live-streaming. They are also one of very few independent companies remaining that give trackside support at club race meetings.
AVON and Sevens
2023 started with the news that AVON were to stop production of racing tyres in December 2023, with the vast Wiltshire site now closed after 118 years. This caused many championships to panic last season and start looking at other makes.
Caterham Cars, who ran all their championships and road cars on AVON tyres have signed a 3 year agreement with Toyo for the supply of tyres. The Toyo R888R is now the tyre of choice for all but one Caterham Championship. The CSCC didn't follow this trend, given the variety of car we have. With Avon stopping production it did force us to make a decision. The CSCC remain in contact with James at Avon, with news anticipated in the future regarding the moulds used in the past to produce tyres of interest, such as the ZZR and ZZS. At present, any tyres the factory have in stock is 'quarantined' and unavailable to buy. Predictably, a degree of stockpiling has taken place, with few ZZR Extremes now available in the market.
For 2024, our Sevens drivers have two choices.
1. They can continue to use Avon Extreme's and RT-7 (any list 1A/B/C treaded tyre) and race within the Verum Builders Open Series. 2. They can use any list 1A/B/C treaded tyre EXCEPT the soft Kumho and Avon Extreme's and RT-7 within the Gold Arts Magnificent Sevens. For those racing in the Gold Arts Magnificent Sevens, this could be an opportunity for some drivers to think laterally and try something new from the 'Blue Book'. Whilst it will depend on wheel widths, power, rake and diameter, companies such as MRF, Cooper (CT01), Nankang, Kumho, Yokohama, Pirelli (Corsa Classic 'wet') and Toyo all produce 13" tyres, not to mention various other eligible Avon tyres (whilst stocks last). Adams & Page have secured stocks of Kumho V70, soft (for Open) and medium (for Mag 7's) and Toyo R888R.
A popular tyre manufacturer with many of you and the control manufacturer for Swinging 60s and MG Trophy. Yokohama had advised that supply of 13” tyres would be a problem in 2023, with some clubs championships therefore switching from Yokohama to the Toyo R888R in 13”. Adams & Page have secured stocks and to control panic buying, limit sales of some sizes to one set at a time to CSCC customers. The CSCC office and co-ordinators remain in contact with Adams & Page on stock levels, ensuring drivers will always have an alternative and updating series regulations, if a given tyre should ever become unavailable. For 2024, A & P have secured good stocks of Yokohama 048 in 13” and 15”, with preference being given to Swinging Sixties and Lackford Spridgets competitors, there should be no problem of supply.
Some have questioned why we don't change Swinging 60 regulations to allow any list 1A/B/C tyre. No other company except Yokohama have such a large size range of high side-wall, performance tyres. This ensures a more period look, high performance and means you don't have to change final drive ratio. The office and series co-ordinators monitor and discuss this situation from one season to the next.
Nankang UK are introducing a new '1C' tyre to the UK in early 2024, the CRS, which will be in addition to their AR1 and NS2R. Supplies are expected to commence some time in March and Adams & Page have confirmed they will have stocks. It will be interesting to see how it compares with the Yokohama 052. At this stage, the main difference being that the Yokohama is EU rated “A” in the wet, whilst the Nankang is rated “C”.
Kumho Slicks Fresh Kumho medium slicks are now in stock at Adams & Page, in the 18" size that the former Kumho BMW drivers have typically been using. A full set is priced at £1000 (inc. VAT). Whilst the CSCC Ramair BMW Championship allows a freedom of tyre choice, the Kumho is a proven tyre.
Puma Cup Dunlop Direzza
Adams and Page have just announced they will stock the regulation size Dunlop Direzza DZ03G, in R2/R3 compound, in size 195/50/15.