Michelin made history on this weekend's Catalunya Rally, where Sebastien Loeb's 10th victory of the season secured Citroen Sport its third consecutive World Rally Championship for Manufacturers - and Michelin's 38th WRC title in all. With one round of the series remaining, the result capped a landmark year in which Michelin has become the first tyre company whose partners have taken a seasonal clean sweep of every major motorsport world title on two wheels and four.
Loeb clinched the drivers' title for Citroen and Michelin two rallies ago, in Japan, and the Frenchman has annihilated the record for victories in a single campaign, which previously stood at six.
On the world's racetracks, Michelin adapted superbly to a new Formula One regulation restricting drivers to a single set of tyres for qualifying and a full, 300-kilometre (185-mile) race distance. Fernando Alonso (Renault) scored seven victories en route to becoming the youngest champion in F1 history, Renault pipped fellow Michelin partner McLaren Mercedes to the world title for constructors and Michelin ended the season with 18 victories (and as many pole positions) from 19 grands prix. Just as in rallying, its partner teams had to cope with extreme diversity: the events took place in a wide range of conditions on five continents.
In MotoGP, motorcycle racing's premier class, Michelin rider Valentino Rossi collected his fifth straight world title - and ensured that his Yamaha team lifted the manufacturers' crown. The result marked Michelin's 14th consecutive riders' title - and 25th in all - in the sport's top division, In addition to winning the six major titles - and a bevy of world championship successes in other disciplines, on two wheels and four - Michelin put the seal on its record-breaking season by winning the Le Mans 24 Hours. Audi drivers Tom Kristensen, Marco Werner and JJ Lehto netted the company's 13th outright victory in the world's most prestigious endurance race and extended an unbeaten run that stretches back to 1998.
EDOUARD MICHELIN, Michelin chairman and CEO:
"The 2005 season has been particularly rewarding and the fruit of our company's technical endeavours has been very visible in the World Rally Championship, Formula One and MotoGP. Our unparalleled technical expertise has certainly played its part in this success, but the quality of the relationships we have with all our partners has also been a significant factor."