Piero Taramasso is obviously in the Sepang pit for Michelin. He explains what the tire situation is for the first test of the season.
“We started with the same tires as in the GP 2018 in Malaysia, so that the teams can make a comparison with a product they’re already familiar with,” explained Clermont-Ferrand’s manager. “We also have a new front tire compound available with characteristics that range between medium and hard from last season. We realized that the medium was too soft, and the hard was too hard. If we have a positive feedback from the riders and the teams, this solution will also be used in the tests in Qatar and finally approved for 2019."
Instead, Michelin has two new compounds for the rear tire: a soft and a medium, built with a new technology.
“We also had one similar in 2018, which reached good results. As in the previous case, if the feedback is positive, we’ll take them to Qatar, then they’ll be used for the entire season.”
By now, Michelin has reached a good performance stability, which is why the chassis and profiles will remain those of 2018 and will not change throughout 2019.
“Our goal is to provide stability to the teams and further improve lap times, especially in those circuits like those outside of Europe where we never test.”