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Michelin preparing for any eventuality 03 Sep 2003

Wheels and tyres.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, San Marino Grand Prix, Preparations, Imola, Italy, 17 April 2003

Michelin will test revised tyres at Monza this week in response to the changes in measuring procedures expected at next weekend's Italian Grand Prix. However, the company insists it is not an admission that its current tyres are illegal.

In an interview with the Michelin press department issued on Wednesday, Motorsport Director Pierre Dupasquier again stressed that their tyres comply with 2003 regulations and suggested that accurately measuring tread width after a race would be extremely difficult.

"It will be almost impossible to define an objective method to measure the limits of a tread after running," he said. "A tyre when running deforms, gathers 'pick-up' off the track..."

However, amid suggestions that their tyres could be deemed illegal under the revised procedures, Dupasquier said it would be foolish for Michelin not to respond to the changes.

"The new interpretation of the rules by the FIA has forced us to react," he said. "You don't think for one moment that Michelin would not respond to the challenge?

"Our people have been working 24 hours a day since last Wednesday and new tyres are being tested in Monza as we speak. For anyone that knows anything about the tyre world, to do what we've just managed is a huge achievement and this is only possible thanks to the hard work and fast reaction time of our teams here in Clermont-Ferrand."

It also emerged on Wednesday that Bridgestone runners Ferrari had contacted the FIA expressing concerns over the width of their rivals' tyres.

See also: Michelin issue statement on tyre changes