Did flat spot cause Hamilton’s puncture?

Lewis Hamilton Formula One tyre supplier Bridgestone believe that a flat spot on Lewis Hamilton s left front tyre may have contributed to the puncture which saw the British driver s chances of victory in the Hungarian Grand Prix slip away.

Hamilton was in second place when his left-front tyre got a puncture on lap 41 of the race. Bridgestone have said that although they cannot be certain of the causes of the puncture as the tyre was shredded as Hamilton nursed his car back to the pits, they believe a piece of debris on the track may have caused the initial failure.

“The best evidence suggests it was a puncture in the area of the tyre where the sidewall meets the shoulder, probably from debris,” Hirohide Hamashina, Bridgestone s director of motor sport tyre development explained to British newspaper The Telegraph. “There was no prior indication of a problem; it was not running above normal temperature or below normal pressure and there was no damage to the tread area.

“A flat spot makes you more vulnerable to a puncture because it makes the tyre thinner in that area and therefore you have less protection against debris damage.”