French tyre manufacturer Michelin head into the 2002 season with McLaren on board as well as Williams and are looking to outdo competitors Bridgestone. Michelin's return to F1 last season was impressive, especially with Williams, and the company's...
French tyre manufacturer Michelin head into the 2002 season with McLaren on board as well as Williams and are looking to outdo competitors Bridgestone. Michelin's return to F1 last season was impressive, especially with Williams, and the company's Competiton Director Pierre Dupasquier says there is no excuse for failure.
"We must do better, much better," he stated. "We no longer have the excuse of not knowing the circuits and we are working with teams whose abilities are well established. Henceforth the challenge is to prove that Michelin can deliver the results everyone expects in the wake of last season’s successes."
Some have voiced the opinion that teams running on Bridgestone tyres will be at a disadvantage with Michelin so strong and Project Director Pascal Vasselon says that experience Michelin gained last year has helped form their strategy for 2002.
"We know that this track changes a lot as the weekend wears on," Vasselon explained. "The experience we gained last year leads us to believe that the best race strategy is to do a very long opening stint. We will bring along new tyres that suit such tactics, but they won’t feature all the latest developments we have been working on during the winter break.
"Like our partners we have been limited by the regulations in the amount of testing we have been able to do and so haven’t been able to evaluate all our new ideas. Initial tests indicate that some developments, on which we have been focusing particularly hard, have opened up promising new research possibilities for the future. We have made notable gains with our wet-weather and intermediate tyres. All our partners are agreed that we have moved forward, but we won’t know if we have done enough to be truly competitive until we get to the first Grand Prix."