Ecclestone confirms Michelin eyeing F1 return

Bernie Ecclestone at Spa

Bernie Ecclestone at Spa

Formula 1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone has confirmed reports from Spa-Francorchamps that Michelin wants to return to Formula 1.

“They do want to get back in,” Ecclestone is quoted by Auto Motor und Sport, “but we have had contracts with Pirelli for some time.”

Ecclestone is referring to commercial arrangements that have already been made with the sport’s existing supplier.

But there is no such contract between Pirelli and Formula 1’s governing FIA beyond 2013.

That has ramped up the pressure on the already-frustrated Italian company, who said moves to change Formula 1’s supplier now would be “farcical”.

“If Michelin wanted to return why didn’t they come out and say so last September?” motor sport boss Paul Hembery told the Telegraph.

He was speaking at Spa-Francorchamps, where after Friday’s punctures for Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso, he had to show photographs to journalists to prove the problems had been simply caused by debris.

“We can’t even get a flat tyre now?” Hembery is quoted by Autosprint. (GMM)