Michelin has decided after weeks of deliberation to apply for the FIA tender opened last month. The company's motorsport boss Pascal Couasnon said the company has taken the decision because it is unhappy about the direction F1 has taken with its tyres.
“What we are doing with this official application is the next step after all the things we have suggested recently,” he said in an interview with Motorsport.com “We're a bit disappointed to see where the technology lies – at least, the way tyres are represented in F1. We've been talking about this for a while. We made some proposals in F1 already but couldn't get the chance to go really far into it two or three years ago. Now that there is a well-established process, we were able to formulate an offer with our ideas.
“Indeed, one of the extremely important things is that in addition to providing a show with technology and tyres that correspond to something, we would like to get closer to everyday life. We want this technology that would be put in the tyres to reach the high-end road car products. It would be something.”
The FIA deadline for the tender is on June 17 and after saying at Le Mans that it was unsure about whether or not to pursue an F1 return, Michelin’s board has now decided to go ahead with a push to win the contract. Doing so will mean that Pirelli, F1's current supplier, faces potential competition for the tender. A final decision will be taken after the FIA has spent a month deliberating technical and safety criteria of canditates.
As of now it's unsure whether or not there will be further competition from other tyre companies who may submit applications to join the process.