Been pondering this one lately so I figured I’d ask!
Mainly just focusing on belly tankers in my mind. I am saying this because the tires are out in the open and therefore have the largest effect.
So, why are land speed car tires large and not small? I figure that smaller tires have less rolling resistance, and more aerodynamic (less un-aerodynamic?). I was then considering why. I came up with the only reason being that the contact patch between tire and earth must be larger due to circumference differences. Traction is important of course as you have to plow through the air more at high speeds. So- think go-kart tires.
Then, I must think the only reason why not is because of tire compounds at high rpm. However, racers like mikey Thompson went 450+ on their tires, so assuming similar compounds are available, going 300 is possible if using a tire smaller than the type those cars use.
Anyone know the actual reason for why larger tires were always/ are always used?