By Alex Kapadia
Formula One teams are focusing on price as they edge closer to a decision on a new tyres supplier for next season.
Sam Michael, technical director for Williams, said after a meeting of the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) yesterday: “The conversations really, at this point, are between Michelin and Avon.
“Avon’s a lot cheaper than Michelin but it’s a less proven product although they’ve done plenty of highly competitive tyres.
“They are a bigger unknown than Michelin because Michelin did it very recently,” he told Reuters. “But there is a significant difference in cost and you are probably talking over three times the difference in cost to the teams. So that’s what’s being debated at the moment.”
Current tyre supplier Bridgestone are withdrawing from the sport at the end of the season, and there are concerns at the safety implications of leaving it this late in finding a new supplier.
Michael also dismissed reports that a decision could be made before the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona next week.
“I think the discussion in FOTA is just acknowledgement that you’ve got to take into account a lot of different factors,” he said.
“It’s not a straight financial decision and it’s not a straight technical decision.”