Dennis keeping options open on tires

MCLAREN will not make a decision on their tire suppliers until later in the season after team boss Ron Dennis admitted keeping an eye on Michelin's performance.

The Woking-based team is currently supplied by Japanese manufacturer Bridgestone and although committed to them, Dennis is not yet ready to confirm them for 2002.

"We are not making a decision at the moment," said Dennis. "As we move towards the end of the season we are committed to Bridgestone and know the good and bad characteristics.

"It is not about one being better than the other because of the different compounds for qualifying and racing - they also differ from circuit to circuit and from country to country.

The tire war will without doubt continue for the remainder of the season, and Michelin have been a surprise performer on their return to the series having taken two wins already this season.

Their performance has made the teams not shod by their rubber sit up and take now, and McLaren are eyeing the competition carefully before making their move for 2002.

"The pendulum has been swinging between Bridgestone and Michelin," said Dennis. "I think during the first half of the season the tire war has been healthy for Formula One."

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