Motorsport Business

Motorsport Business

Metzeler becomes Isle of Man TT’s official tyre supplier

Metzeler has been appointed sole official tyre supplier for the 2023 Isle of Man TT on a long-term deal.

John McGuinness, Honda Racing UK

Prior to 2023, Dunlop was the TT’s official tyre supplier, though the open regulations at the TT meant Metzeler rubber was used by a number of riders.

Metzeler – who is a subsidiary of Pirelli – will take over from Dunlop as official tyre supplier at the TT through to the end of 2027 and will have a prominent service area in the paddock from 2023.

Dunlop losing official tyre supplier status at the TT comes after a troubled 2022 when it was forced to withdraw its slick rear options from the event after a number of high-profile failures at the North West 200.

Further issues followed at the TT, when Padgetts Honda rider Davey Todd suffered a failure on the alternate Dunlop rear option during the opening Superbike race on Sulby Straight.

Prominent Dunlop runner Dean Harrison then secretly switched to Metzeler rubber for the remainder of the TT from the first Supersport race onwards after an issue in the Superbike race left him wanting to “go home”.

Harrison’s DAO Racing team had already switched from Metzeler to Dunlop prior to the 2022 event, which led to “a massive struggle” for the three-time TT winner during practice week and the opening Superbike race.

Despite these woes, Dunlop tyres took victory in all solo classes at the 2022 TT, with Peter Hickman and Michael Dunlop sharing the honours – the latter briefly switching to Metzelers on the opening night of practice before returning to Dunlops.

Dean Harrison, DAO Racing Kawasaki

Dean Harrison, DAO Racing Kawasaki

Photo by: Dave Kneen

At the moment, it’s unclear what presence Dunlop will have at the 2023 TT, though will likely continue supporting a number of riders.

“Metzeler are a welcome addition to the line-up of official sponsor brands for this year’s Isle of Man TT Races,” the Isle of Man’s head of sport at the Department for Enterprise Paul Phillips said.

“Our commercial objective is to work collaboratively to add value to the TT experience for everyone involved in the event.

“Metzeler is already integrally associated with the TT, and is the tyre of choice for many teams competing in the event, with a proven performance track record.

“We are sure that this will be a successful relationship that will grow in strength over the years to come.”


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