FIA Formula One World Championship 2001
United States of America Grand Prix Indianapolis - Sunday, September 30 2001
After leaving Monza, Italy, Formula 1 teams move on to Indianapolis, in the United States of America, for the 16th and penultimate round of this year's world championship.
Pierre Duspaquier says: "The most important thing for us was to listen to our American friends, to see whether or not they wanted this event to take place in the wake of the tragic events on September 11. They do, so naturally we will be at Indy."
Michelin and the BMW WilliamsF1 Team travel in a positive frame of mind following their victory at Monza, where Juan Pablo Montoya judged a one-stop strategy to perfection. Two other Michelin drivers were also to the fore, because Montoya's team-mate Ralf Schumacher finished third and Pedro de la Rosa (Jaguar Racing) was fifth.
Michelin motorsport director Pierre Dupasquier says: "The Italian Grand Prix gives us cause to believe we are working in the right direction. Generally, our performance at Monza was one of our best of the season to date and all our partner teams were competitive. But we will continue to evolve our compounds and constructions all the way until the season's end, at Suzuka." "Can the BMW WilliamsF1 Team get ahead of McLaren-Mercedes in the battle for second place in the world championship for constructors?" "We are always looking to raise our game," Dupasquier says, "but this is a challenge that adds a little spice and it is a particularly ambitious target in what is really a learning year for us."
The F1 circus rolls out of Europe
America returned to the Formula 1 world championship in style last season with the first running of a grand prix in Indianapolis. To cater for the event a new track was built within the confines of the famous oval, only a part of which the banked Turn 4 is common to both. The circuit measures 4.192 km (2.605 miles) and drivers cover 73 laps, a total distance of 305.999 (190.139 miles).
Michelin's F1 project manager Pascal Vasselon adds: "Indianapolis represents a new test for us, because it has a banked section of the kind we don't see at any other circuit. Technically that shouldn't present any great difficulty, but we must find the right compromise to make sure we can cope with that part of the track while managing tyre loads, speed and durability. This is not a typical track. There are some very slow corners "infield" as well as the ultra-fast "banking", so we will have a new type of rear tyre to deal with such demands."