Goodyear, Michelin Refuse F1 Return

With Japanese tire manufacturer Bridgestone announcing their withdrawal from Formula One Championship at the end of 2010, the International Automobile Federation (FIA) needs to speed up in finding a competitive brand to take over from 2011 onwards.

According to recent reports in the US, Goodyear and Michelin seem the most interested tire makers to return to the series, despite constant denying coming from their executives. Both tire manufacturers have been involved with F1 racing in the past, but the current economic crisis seems to have made a bigger impact on their future operations than the prospect of returning to the series.

We have no plans to re-enter F1. However, we continually evaluate a wide range of opportunities to determine the best fit for our strategic direction and make decisions based on the best interests of the company,” said spokesman Ed Markey (Goodyear) when asked about this prospect by the Akron Beacon Journal.

Michelin willingly retired from the race for a single tire supplier in F1 at the end of 2006, deciding that such a policy would not help them progress and further develop their technology. Although they might think otherwise now, again the struggling financial status of the company may become a huge problem in them returning to F1. A spokesman from the company's North American headquarters recently revealed F1 is out of the question for the time being.

In addition, the French tire manufacturer is also linked with a potential switch to the World Rally Championship starting 2011 (through BFGoodrich), where it's likely to take Pirelli's seat for another 3-year period of time. The Italian company recently announced that their commitment with the WRC is being scrutinized by the board of directors.
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