Originally-From: 555 Subaru World Rally Team <stephen.webb@swrt.com>

Subaru to benefit from Pirelli's change of focus.
Subaru and Pirelli form exclusive WRC partnership for 2003.

The 555 Subaru World Rally Team has confirmed today that it will continue its longstanding relationship with Pirelli, and for the 2003 season will benefit from an exclusive tyre supply deal with the Italian tyre manufacturer.

While Pirelli and the 555 Subaru Team have already enjoyed 34 WRC wins together since the relationship was established in 1994, this latest development places them in a unique and advantageous position going into next year's Championship. Now in a position to focus solely on the needs of the Banbury based team, Pirelli has committed to an exclusive development programme for Subaru, which will concentrate on creating the best possible tyre solutions.

David Lapworth, 555 Subaru Team Principal commented: "We have full confidence in Pirelli and our partnership demonstrates our on-going commitment to them. We're very pleased with this new situation and feel that it gives us a unique advantage over our competitors. As Pirelli's exclusive WRC partner, we will now benefit from 100 per cent of its WRC research and development resources, rather then sharing them with any other manufacturers. Unlike other teams in the championship, we won't have to compromise any of our specific requirements - and that's a great position to be in."