How do you choose the best street tire for it? What are the most important things to consider? I believe that traction and speed are the most important when it comes to the prior stated matters. Not to worry though. To make your choice easier between the loads of options you have, I compiled a list of the best street tires for drag racing.
Drag racing has its own thrill to the sport. But to truly enjoy it, tires play a very important role in the race. The better they are – the more fun you have. To speed through the track and win is where all the fun lies.
Top 4 Best 2021 Street Tires For Drag Racing
Mickey Thompson ET Street S/S Racing Radial Tire – P235/60R15
This polyester-ply tire is one of the best for drag racing. With a 6 inches tread depth and a steel belt, the ET Street S/S will give you the durability you need. Not only does it have the strength to last a long time but also comes in 18 popular sizes. This way, you won’t have to worry if it’s the right fit for your car. The range in sizes will make sure it is.
One thing that you definitely need in drag racing is established control of your vehicle. That is one thing that this street tire will be sure to provide. The tubeless radial construction will ensure that you have control and that will be the secret to your win.
Apart from this, the minimal tread void is perfect for traction on dry tracks. What more could you want from the tire?
Goodyear Wrangler SR-A Radial Tire – 275/60R20 114S
Made from rubber, and with a rim diameter of 20 inches, this tire also ranks best for drag racing. Here’s why:
The Goodyear Wrangler has a treadwear indicator that makes it easy for you to know its longevity. With the indicator, it also has a tread depth of 11 32nds. This makes it feel amazing on any dry track or place with lots of gravel and dirt.
The best part that I love about it? It’s simple. The way it doesn’t make a lot of sound. It’s best to take on your opponent silently and let your success make the noise. The amazing steering response and all these amazing qualities definitely qualify it among the best.
Bridgestone Potenza RE97AS Run-Flat Passenger Tire P245/45RF17 95 V
The Bridgestone Potenza is also one of the top qualifiers for the best tires for drag racing. What makes it so special? The Grip. When you drive with these tires, you can feel the difference. Not only does it have an amazing grip but also has a swift steering response that will probably outrun your opponent.
Unlike every other tire, it’s also a great performer on wet surfaces which is what I love about it. And if you’re looking for durability, you should look no further. Why? Because this tire has an optimized casing automatically improving gas mileage.
Weighing 30.6 pounds, the RE97AS is also vehicle-specific. If you have to go drag racing, this tire is a good bet. Especially since it has a tread depth of 10 32nds and a rim width of 8 inches. It sure has some features you would not want to miss out on.
TOYO Proxes R8R All-Season Radial Tire – 225/50ZR15 91W
This is the 4th option on the list for the top street tires for drag racing in 2021. The Proxes R8R made the cut with a huge margin from its competitors. This all-season radial tire is a universal fit.
TOYO definitely went all-out with this model giving it a rim diameter of 15 inches. Along with this, the brand also made sure that radial tire had a tread depth of 6.2 32nds. For me, the tire had a great grip and that is enough to get you ahead towards the finish line in a drag race.
After all, everyone is here to win. Even if it’s just the thrill of the race, winning really gives you the clout you deserve. The Proxes R8R with its 23-pound worth of weight is sure to attract all that clout.
Now let’s talk about some other things that you might be curious about.
Can You Use Drag Tires On The Street?
This is a question that almost everyone asks. After all, if you’re spending all your money on a tyre, you need to know when you should be using it. Drag tires are often made for what they’re obviously for – Drag racing.
Why is that? The grip, the traction, and the speed that these tires provide are made for tracks. However, if you drive them on your street, there’s a nice chance that you won’t get in any trouble for it. But it is recommended that you don’t do that.
If you do, make sure that you use the right kind of street tires. This is why I gave you the best drag racing tires that are also made for the street. This way you can spend safely and put your money to good use. It’s a one-stop solution!
What Is The Best Tire Pressure For Drag Racing?
Drag racing isn’t as simple as a beginner would think it is. Most times, there is a lot of science involved in it and it can get complicated and a little risky to understand. You don’t have to worry about that though. I’m here to make your life easier. Let’s break this down real quick:
The load capacity or the air pressure in your tires should be ideal when driving. What most people get confused about is what the best pressure should be? It would differ from vehicle to vehicle. If you’re in a drag race, you need to ensure that it’s at its best.
Not only will it help you in avoiding any trouble in the race and future, but also help you stay as far ahead as possible. Mickey Thompson has very specific guidelines on what your tire pressure should be according to your tire type. If you want to be more specific, you can also see if your tire pressure is good for your race too.
For drag racing, your tire pressure should ideally be above 8psi. But the higher the weight, the higher tire pressure you can go for. This would mean above 12 psi if your diameter is under 30 inches. If it’s over, feel safe to increase your psi to 16. If you understand how it works, believe me – it won’t sound complicated at all.
Why Do Drag Cars Have Skinny Front Tires?
Drag racing seems very simple. But to win, you need to know your tactics. You need to have a couple of tricks up your sleeve. This usually comes with experience and you get around to using a lot of these tactics once you’re a pro.
Lucky for you, I can tell you some of these tactics even if you’re a beginner. One of these tactics has to do with using skinny front tires in your drag car. Are you wondering why racers do that? It’s to win.
Here’s how this works:
Skinny tires carry less weight. This means with lesser weight, there is also lesser friction. These two things aid in increasing speed and helping your drag car simply glide towards the finish line. Lightweight rims and a low rotating mass makes this possible. This would bring you to another question. Why not just use skinny tires? Why only at the front of the drag car?
This is because the thick or the wider tires have a strong grip and gives you control. You don’t only need to reach the finish line but reach it safely. The back tires help with that. This strategy is called staggering. You can use this along with your best street tire for drag racing to being a pro at it early on. It doesn’t hurt anyone to having all this information on your hand.
Things To Consider When Choosing Street Tires For Drag Racing
Here’s the thing that most people miss when they decide to try drag racing. They usually don’t know what tires to choose. Buying Guides can often be too long to read. This is why I have compiled a short intro on what you need to know when choosing street tires.
When looking for the perfect street tire for drag racing, it is best to consider the law first. Make sure everything is compliant with it. After all, you don’t want to be caught in something illegal when having fun. That’s a no-no.
This is why you should make sure that the tire you choose is DOT rated. The Department of Transportation (DOT) has specific rules and guidelines that you must follow if you drive a drag race tire on the streets. This explains why every street tire for drag racing that is DOT rated meets all these requirements.
This rating gives you the assurance that the tire is durable and has great traction. After all the DOT performs tests on tires to pass them. It’s an accreditation you should think highly of.
We talked about tire pressure and the best tire pressure for drag racing earlier. That would be a good indicator that air pressure is an important aspect that you need to consider. Whenever you’re buying a street tire, consider the tire pressure.
Make sure that the psi is just right according to the weight and the diameter. For more additions, you can try adjusting it to see if it works for you and your car. When you see the right air pressure, you know it’s the right tire.
Weight is also a very important thing to consider when choosing a street tire for drag racing. Drag racing usually uses very light tires. You would need to get a tire with a good casing because it’s lightweight.
However, street tires are often heavier. You need the perfect weight that is not too light for the streets and not too heavy for drag racing. Once you get the perfect mix of these both, you have your pick of street tires.
Weight can be a tricky thing to measure or to know if it’s right. If you ever get around to choosing a tire, make sure it fits right with your vehicle.
Compounds work in a very similar way to the weight of the drag and street radials. You need a mix of hard and soft compounds. Soft compounds are perfect for tires that are used in drag racing. But if you use the same compound tires for the streets, you’re going to have to spend more money down the line.
Here is why:
When you use a soft compound, the tires tend to wear off easily. This would not only mean more maintenance but also mean that you would need to replace your tire earlier than its end-life. Make sure the tire you choose isn’t too soft for the streets if you want to save your cash. It’s only good for your pocket.
Sidewalls are something that a lot of people miss out on when choosing a street tire. Some of the best street tires have a sturdy sidewall. Why is that? It’s because of traction. While a flexible sidewall also provides traction, it only does so for a straight line. Because that’s what drag racers drive for.
For the streets, you need to turn and corner in a lot of places. A flexible sidewall makes this very difficult for you. It will become hell even when you’re only driving two blocks down. Hence, make sure your drag radial has the sidewall for the streets. It will be the best decision you make when choosing a street tire for drag racing.
This was the complete guide you need to have for the best street tires for drag racing. After this, all you would need to know is get your pick of tires and go drag racing. It’s fun and knowing that you made the right purchase, will only make it better. Now go win that race and show off those rims!