This weekend’s 89th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans is not only the most prestigious endurance race on the planet, but a crucial event for Goodyear. After becoming the exclusive tyre supplier to the LMP2 class racing on the European and global stage, Goodyear is preparing for a large-scale operation to support 26 cars.
A major change to Formula 1 for the 2022 season will be the introduction of 18-inch tyres after half a century of wide sidewall tyres sitting on 13-inch rims. Pirelli is presenting the new tyres at Silverstone today and comments that “now it’s time to change to a more modern approach” with a dimension actually seen on today’s road cars.
Pirelli, as title sponsor of this weekend’s F1 event in Imola – the Gran Premio del Made in Italy e dell’Emilia Romagna – is supplying the race trophies. The tyre maker turned to Alice Ronchi to supply the creativity, selecting the artist for this project thanks to her collaboration with Pirelli HangarBicocca, the non-profit foundation dedicated to the production and promotion of contemporary art established within a converted warehouse in Milan in 2004.
TM Boano Factory Racing, an Enduro World Championship race team for the Italian motorcycle manufacturer TM, has chosen Maxxis as its exclusive tyre supplier for the 2021 FIM Enduro World Championship (EnduroGP) and the national 2021 Italian Enduro Championship.
Cars competing in the DTM race series will race exclusively on Michelin tyres during the 2021 season. As per the agreement signed that Michelin Motorsport signed with DTM management last week, the tyre maker will supply Michelin Pilot Sport GT S9M tyres as well as a range of associated services. Drivers will use the Michelin tyres for the first time at the DTM test drives on 7-8 April at the Hockenheimring and 4-6 May at the Lausitzring in Germany. The season starts on 18 June in Monza, Italy.
On Thursday, Pirelli will return as exclusive tyre supplier to the FIA World Rally Championship after an absence of more than ten years. The Rallye Monte-Carlo – itself 110 years old in 2021 – is considered one of the most demanding anywhere in the world because of the often changeable weather conditions encountered on the asphalt roads that snake their way through the French Alps. Pirelli is bringing around 3,200 tyres to this challenging rally round.
In August Goodyear unveiled the treaded tyre it will supply to the new Pure ETCR electric touring car championship when it gets underway next year, and since then has benefitted from technical feedback supplied by series promoter Eurosport Events and the technical department at WSC Group. Working with this feedback, Goodyear has finalised the specification of the specially-developed Eagle F1 SuperSport race tyre.
The FIM Moto2 and Moto3 World Championships will continue racing on Dunlop tyres for at least another three years following the extension of Dunlop’s contract with Dorna Sports. This means that Dunlop, who has partnered with Grand Prix motorcycle racing since its inauguration in 1949, will exclusively supply the two classes until at least the end of the 2023 season.
Goodyear will make its debut as a tyre supplier to the European Le Mans Series this weekend. The manufacturer is working alongside top teams in the LMP2 and LMGTE classes at the season-opening 4 Hours of Le Castellet. Goodyear’s latest tyre technology will be fitted to five front-running LMP2 prototypes and every car in the LMGTE field throughout the ELMS season. The brand’s entrance into the series follows last year’s fitments to LMP2 winners in the FIA World Endurance Championship. However the weekend will mark the first time that LMGTE cars have raced on the Goodyear Eagle F1 SuperSport race tyres. Having been delayed by the pandemic, the series will run over five races until November.
Just before Christmas, Motorsport UK announced it had selected Cooper Tire Europe as exclusive tyre supplier for the coming three British Rallycross Championship seasons, and as such is renaming the championship the Motorsport UK British Rallycross Championship 5 Nations Trophy Presented by Cooper Tires. The tyre maker says it is “excited” to extend its motorsport supply portfolio.
Goodyear is to serve as official tyre supplier to the LMP2 category of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) and European Le Mans Series (ELMS). This arrangement follows the decision made by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) to appoint a single tyre supplier for the Le Mans Prototype class.
Testing for the Extreme E off-road electric racing series began earlier this month at the Château de Lastours off-road proving grounds in the south of France. One question the tested aimed to answer during proceedings was how well the car and tyres work together. They also looked into any potential weaknesses in the electric race car’s physical and technical design, not least in its motor. The tests lasted several days and were run by Continental, tyre supplier to Extreme E, and Spark Racing Technology.
In 2021, Formula 1 will bid farewell to 13-inch rims and tyres with chubby sidewalls, with the switch to an 18-inch dimension taking place that season. The onus falls upon exclusive tyre supplier Pirelli to develop rubber for the 2021 F1 cars, and Pirelli says its development will be greatly aided by the adoption of the 18-inch tyre size in ‘feeder’ series Formula 2 from 2020.
During last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix, Jead Todt disclosed that a second tyre maker has expressed interest in becoming exclusive Formula 1 tyre supplier for the 2020 to 2023 seasons. He didn’t reveal the company’s name – he claimed not to have the information at hand – however we confirmed it wasn’t Michelin.
The opening round of the new Formula 3 Asian Championship took place on the weekend of 14-15 July, and all vehicles lined up on the grid at Malaysia’s Sepang International Circuit were shot with GitiCompete GTR1 tyres. Giti Tire is on board as exclusive tyre supplier to the series.