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SBD Global/August 30, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Bernie Ecclestone Denies Reports Michelin Could Replace Pirelli As F1 Tire Supplier

F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone insists that Pirelli "will remain as F1's sole supplier 2014, despite Michelin having thrown its hat into the ring," according to Adam Cooper of AUTOWEEK. The French company "has now confirmed to the FIA that it is interested in the role." Some top teams "are known to be interested in at least discussing a change, despite the short lead time Michelin has before the start of testing for next season in late January." Ecclestone also denied that "there was any interest from the teams in joining forces with Michelin." He said, "None of the teams who have spoken to me have said that. All the teams who have spoken to me say they are very happy with Pirelli, and the problems they've had, they're happy that they've dealt with them" (AUTOWEEK, 8/28). SKY SPORTS' William Esler reported when asked about the chances of seeing Michelin return, Ecclestone told U.S. broadcaster Speed, "FOM and Pirelli have a contract." Whilst that may be the case, Pirelli Motorsport Dir Paul Hembery has admitted that "they are yet to agree a deal with the FIA, but Ecclestone does not see that as an issue." He said, "We don't need one, I don't think. They are nothing to do with commercial. The FIA's position is that they are regulators. They regulate all the regulations that have been agreed" (SKY SPORTS, 8/29).
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