Bridgestone to quit F1 after 2010
|By Steven English||Monday, November 2nd 2009, 04:29 GMT|
Bridgestone will withdraw from Formula 1 at the end of the 2010 season.
The Japanese tyre manufacturer announced its decision not to renew its F1 contract early on Monday morning.
Bridgestone Motorsport director Hiroshi Yasukawa said in a statement: "The decision made by the board of directors comes after considerable and lengthy evaluations and has been based on the company's need to redirect its resources towards further intensive development of innovative technologies."
Bridgestone had been a tyre supplier in Formula 1 since 1997 and had been the sole supplier since the beginning of the 2007 season, following Michelin's departure, winning 156 of the 223 grands prix it entered.
"Our sincere appreciation is extended to Bernie Ecclestone and Formula One Management, the Formula 1 teams with whom it has been an honour to work alongside and the many F1 fans who have followed our activities over the past 13 years," added Yasukawa.
Bridgestone will continue in its role as partner and tyre supplier to the GP2 Series and GP2 Asia Series, and will also continue as the sole supplier in MotoGP until at least 2011.