• Tyre news

Michelin confirms F1 interest

ESPNF1 Staff
April 6, 2010 « Button working flat-out to resolve handling problems | »

A Michelin official has confirmed the French company is considering coming back to Formula One in 2011 as a tyre supplier.

Speculation about Michelin's return gained momentum at Sepang last weekend, after team bosses met with Bernie Ecclestone and discussed at length how to handle the departure of Bridgestone as the official supplier at the end of the season. Michelin left F1 after an intense tyre war with Bridgestone at the end of 2006, upset that the sport had opted to run with just a single supplier.

Rumours in Malaysia said Michelin wants to be paid to return next year and favours a move from 13 to 18-inch wheel hub diameters. A spokesman said in February that Michelin "might consider returning but there are some very clear conditions".

And in the wake of the latest reports, a representative told French daily Le Figaro: "We have made no decision. But we are closely monitoring the evolution of the regulations, knowing that we are committed to promoting the technical quality of our products and also the notion of respect for the environment."

Michelin is also believed to be open to a tyre war with rival manufacturers.