JUNE 29, 1998
Michelin talks to Williams and Ferrari
WITH Goodyear continuing to pursue its incomprehensible plans to withdraw from Formula 1 at the end of the year, Michelin's sporting boss Pierre Dupasquier is pushing hard to convince the French tiremaker to leap into Grand Prix racing with Williams and Ferrari. Dupasquier had meetings with both Ferrari and Williams at Magny-Cours to discuss the possibilities but it seems as though he is trying to use opportunities with the teams as a lever to convince the Michelin management that it is a good moment to get back into the sport.
Things will need to move very quickly if Dupasquier is to be successful as the company will need to begin testing very soon if it wishes to be competitive next season. Having said that Michelin has enormous amounts of data from its previous involvement in F1 and has had a small group of engineers working on the design of F1 tires for the last couple of years.
While Goodyear engineers are hoping that success in Canada and France with Michael Schumacher will convince the management in Akron to change its mind, time is already running short as staff are beginning to drift away, believing there is no future in F1 with Goodyear. A final decision will be needed within the next few weeks.
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