Formula 1 News - February 2005
|2005 FIA Formula One World Championship|
Round 1: Australian Grand Prix (Albert Park, Melbourne), March 4-6
25 February: Michelin Preview - Pace with added durability: Michelin confronts every challenge
Formula One’s four-month racing sabbatical comes to an end this weekend – and the 2005 Australian Grand Prix heralds more than just a new world championship season. It marks the dawn of a new era because drivers are now obliged to use a single set of tyres for a full grand prix distance – a tactic that has been absent from F1 since the early 1980s.
Host venue Albert Park is not a permanent racetrack but has a distinguished motor racing heritage. It hosted several non-championship Australian GPs during the 1950s – British legend Stirling Moss was among the winners – but faded into disuse towards the end of that decade. The sport did not return until 1996, when Melbourne won the right to stage Australia’s annual round of the F1 world championship (first established in Adelaide in 1985, one year after Michelin ended its original stint in F1).
This year’s event will be the 21st Australian GP to count towards the world championship and the 10th to take place in Melbourne. Since returning to F1 in 2001, Michelin has scored one victory in Albert Park – David Coulthard (Team McLaren Mercedes) led a spectacular Bibendum 1-2-3 in 2003. In last season’s corresponding fixture, Fernando Alonso (Renault) was Michelin’s leading runner, in third place.
Pierre Dupasquier, Michelin motorsport director “We face a host of unanswered questions as we
prepare for the opening race of the season in Melbourne. How will the latest tyre regulations affect wear rates and consistency in
the heat of competition? I’ll tell you once the chequered flag has dropped on Sunday afternoon!
Driver perspective: Mark Webber, BMW WilliamsF1 Team "The new regulations have posed a very difficult situation for the tyre manufacturers, in that drivers now have to do all of qualifying and the whole race on the same set of rubber. This makes compound selection very tricky. In Melbourne, as with other circuits, we need a tyre with lots of grip but it also has to be very durable - a hard compound - to last the distance. This is something that Michelin and WilliamsF1 have been working on very diligently."
Latest Formula 1 News from Michelin:Michelin to withdraw from Formula 1 at the end of 2006 (14/12/2005)
2006 F1 Regulations (28/10/2005)
Pierre Dupasquier – architect of 1300 wins and 180 world titles (16/10/2005)
Michelin confirms F1 Title Double (16/10/2005)
Michelin takes World Championship Double (28/09/2005)
Alonso secures Formula One World Title with Michelin (26/09/2005)
Belgium - Race (11/09/2005)
The Formula 1 regulations applicable in 2008 (11/09/2005)
Belgium - Qualifying (10/09/2005)
More news from Michelin