WRC Secures Pirelli Deal for 2011
As far as the WRC is concerned, one good news about its control tire deal surfaced in the media today, as it was confirmed that Pirelli will continue to supply the series with rally tires for an additional year, meaning in 2011.
The Italian tire manufacturer has been supplying tires for the WRC caravan ever since 2007, and recently signed a 3-year extension, until 2013, with the International Automobile Federation (FIA). However, due to economic difficulties, that deal was revised and the parties have now agreed on a single-year extension, with the discussions for the 2012 season to be resumed through the 2011 season.
Pirelli have been the only company present in the tender process for a new tire supply deal with the WRC. However, ever since the end of last season – somewhere in early November – the Italian company admitted that they are reconsidering their deal with the series because of financial difficulties.
“We've had to close factories, lay people off and sometimes the sport has to come second,” said Pirelli's motorsport director Paul Hembery at the time.
Apart from spending their money on developing WRC-spec tires – somewhere around EUR11 million – the Italian company is also backing their Pirelli Star Driver initiative, allowing young promising drivers to compete in 6 WRC events throughout the duration of one season.