Michelin looks toward fifth victory

Michelin looks towards 5th Le Mans victory. Top Audi, Cadillac, Panoz, MG, Ferrari and Porsche Teams Choose Michelin. LE MANS, FRANCE - As Audi seeks its third straight victory at the 24 hours of Le Mans, Michelin is preparing for its fifth win...

Michelin looks towards 5th Le Mans victory.
Top Audi, Cadillac, Panoz, MG, Ferrari and Porsche Teams Choose Michelin.

LE MANS, FRANCE - As Audi seeks its third straight victory at the 24 hours of Le Mans, Michelin is preparing for its fifth win in a row in the ultimate sports car endurance race.

Le Mans is both a proving ground and a showcase. For Michelin, it has also been a very big trophy case. The global tire-maker shod the very first Le Mans winner (Chenard & Walcker) in 1923 and has dominated the 24 hour race in recent years.

"Le Mans is primarily a test of performance and reliability," said Herb Johnson, director of motorsports for Michelin North America. "It's not enough to be fast, you have to have the staying power to endure 24 hours of the most punishing driving in sports car racing. That is why top teams turn to Michelin. They know they can count on Michelin to take the rigors of Le Mans and not only endure, but excel."

For 2002, Michelin has been chosen as the tire technology partner for 27 Le Mans contenders, including the defending champion Audi R8 prototypes.

During final testing at Le Mans in early May, Michelin-shod teams topped the charts in all four classes with Audi leading overall and in the Prototype LMP (Le Mans Prototype) 900 class, while a Michelin-shod factory MG led the LMP 675 class. In the GTS (Grand Touring Sport) category, the Michelin equipped Pro Drive Ferrari Maranello was quickest and in GT (Grand Touring), American Kevin Buckler's The Racer's Group Porsche GT3 led the way.

"Michelin takes its role in race performance very seriously," said Johnson. "The first charge is 'do no harm' - that is to be reliable and do nothing from a tire perspective that detracts from the team's performance. The second challenge is for the tire to add value - those precious tenths of a second in speed, in multiple-stints, in wet and dry performance throughout the race that enhance the car's ability. This is what Michelin brings to Le Mans, and to every series in which we compete. This is why Audi, Cadillac, MG, Panoz, Porsche and our other partners choose Michelin. We are their true partner, fighting for and delivering every advantage."

Prepared for every contingency, Michelin will bring 5,300 tires to Le Mans, serviced by more than 50 technicians, engineers and tire fitters. For complete details on Michelin's participation at Le Mans and in motorsports around the globe, visit www.michelinsport.com.

-michelin-

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About this article
Series Le Mans
Drivers Kevin Buckler
Teams Porsche Team