Dupasquier: We have learnt a lesson

Pierre Dupasquier, Michelin's Motorsport Director, has said that his company has lessons to learn after losing out to Ferrari and Bridgestone at Indianapolis. The race was effectively decided by the weakness of the French rubber in moderately wet conditions.

Dupasquier: We have learnt a lesson

After some recent races where Michelin's hot-weather superiority was evident, the low temperatures and damp track at the speedway played to Bridgestone's strengths. The Bridgestone-shod Saubers came in third and fifth on an unusually good day for the Swiss team.

Race winner Michael Schumacher contradicted those who suggested that his victory was fortuitous, saying: "On the contrary, we have had this wet weather ace in our hands for so long without being able to use it. Finally, we could."

"The lessons learnt will help us to strengthen our all-round performance and that will be a great source of motivation," said Dupasquier. "Michelin thrives on competition and we have to pick up a few seconds per lap in rain conditions this winter. I assure you we will!"

"Today's race was absolutely fascinating from a technical perspective," added Dupasquier. "We set the early pace and our drivers were the quickest out there when the circuit dried towards the end. In slightly damp conditions our grooved dry-weather tyres enabled our leading drivers to run up to three seconds per lap faster than Michael Schumacher. In wetter conditions we were losing two seconds per lap on intermediate tyres compared to Michael Schumacher and one second against other competitors. This race has given us lots of useful information.

With Michelin's title chances with Kimi Raikkönnen hanging by a thread following their poor wet-weather performance at the United States Grand Prix, Dupasquier admits that the drivers' championship will be a bonus. But they can still win the constructors' title with Williams, who are only three points behind Ferrari heading to the Suzuka finale. McLaren are now out of the running for the constructors' crown.

"If we pick up the championship, that will be a bonus," said Dupasquier. "Our main goal in Formula One, however, is to provide our five partner teams with an excellent technical service. The fact that all of them have been consistently competitive throughout this season proves that we have done just that.

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