Michelin Critical of Single Tyre Proposal

Michelin motorsports director Pierre Dupasquier has re-iterated his company's opposition to a possible switch to a single tyre supplier in Formula One

Michelin Critical of Single Tyre Proposal

With the sport's governing body and the teams having met earlier this week to discuss regulations for F1 from the start of 2008, Dupasquier has warned that Michelin would likely quit the sport if control tyres were introduced.

In a statement issued by Michelin, Dupasquier said: "This proposal to work with a single tyre manufacturer in reality conceals a fundamental issue: the reduction of the role of the tyre to that of a banal component with no other added value than permitting Formula One cars to be mobile.

"As the world's leading tyre manufacturer, that is something we cannot accept. In day to day life, road car and truck manufacturers are forever coming to us with a view to developing new tyres that optimise the running, comfort, road holding and energy efficiency of their vehicles, while in Formula One, a technological showcase if ever there was one, you're talking about tyres becoming something banal.

"That would make no sense at all for our customers and for the image of the tyre. When you are the leading tyre manufacturer, you have a responsibility vis-?-vis your profession, or in any case a responsibility as we see it at Michelin."

Although Dupasquier acknowledges that the aim of a control tyre regulations would be to reduce costs, improve safety by reducing performance and ensure a more level playing field between teams, he believes regulations could be formulated to achieve those targets and allow multiple tyre manufacturers in the sport.

"We have two proposals for bringing down costs: fewer tyre types and restrictions concerning the distances covered in testing," he added. "At 800 dollars per kilometre covered in testing, that soon adds up to an appreciable saving. You could reasonably reduce the distance covered annually by each team by 20,000 km. Multiply that by ten teams, that comes to 200,000 km; a saving to F1 of 160 million dollars!

"This is something we have already put into application with another tyre manufacturer in world rallying."

Dupasquier claims that recent tyre problems suffered by NASCAR at Pocono proved that safety was not necessarily improved in control tyre series, while equality could not be guaranteed because even control tyres could be developed in such a way to suit one team's chassis over another.

"To be honest, I think the presence of a single tyre manufacturer would do nothing at all to improve the interest of the racing."

shares
comments
Q & A with Michelin's Pierre Dupasquier
Previous article

Q & A with Michelin's Pierre Dupasquier

Next article

Raikkonen Quickest, Montoya on Pole

Raikkonen Quickest, Montoya on Pole
Why Mercedes believes it can make the step F1 needs to fight Red Bull Plus

Why Mercedes believes it can make the step F1 needs to fight Red Bull

The 2022 Formula 1 season was Mercedes' leanest for a decade, achieving just a solitary pole and grand prix win. Yet the team is confident it has got the tools it needs to cast that disappointment aside and return to the front of the field again next year

How BRM's one-off F1 double defied its rollercoaster history Plus

How BRM's one-off F1 double defied its rollercoaster history

It’s 60 years since BRM achieved its goal and Graham Hill led the team to a world title double. But that was just part of the remarkable story of a unique team that at times overstretched its resources and had its fair share of disappointments

Formula 1
Dec 8, 2022
The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever Plus

The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever

OPINION: The effectiveness of DRS in Formula 1 remains a topic of debate as the winter break gives a chance for reflection on the racing we saw in 2022. For all of its detractors, perhaps an experiment where DRS is cast aside and the impact this has on racing is in order to truly understand its merits in modern F1

Formula 1
Dec 8, 2022
The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche Plus

The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche

OPINION: Everything looked set for Red Bull and Porsche to join forces for the 2026 season, before the marriage between both parties was called off. While at the time it looked like a major coup for Formula 1 in gaining both VW Group powerhouses Audi and Porsche for 2026, Red Bull and Porsche have really been spared a potentially fractious relationship.

Formula 1
Dec 7, 2022
How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive Plus

How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive

Glory days for Tyrrell became increasingly infrequent
 after Jackie Stewart’s retirement. But in the latest instalment of his history of the team for Autosport's sister title GP Racing, 
MAURICE HAMILTON recalls how Ken Tyrrell’s plucky and defiantly small team stayed bold enough to innovate – springing a surprise with F1’s first six-wheeled car

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2022
The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start Plus

The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start

While it launched the F1 career 
of a future world champion, STUART CODLING recalls that the BT60 was also the final nail in the coffin of a once-great marque 30 years ago. Here is its story

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2022
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Plus

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Autosport in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Plus

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022