By Alex Kapadia
Bridgestone have announced it will not renew its contract to supply tyres for Formula One when their current contract runs out in 2010.
The Japanese manufacturers have been the sole supplier of tyres for the series since 2007.
However, they have revealed that they want to focus their resources on new technology and products after honouring the final year of their deal next season.
Bridgestone confirmed in a statement: “The company focused on the need to redirect its resources towards the further intensive development of those innovative technologies and strategic products which support the company’s goals and further enhance the company’s reputation as a technology leader.
“The lessons learned through Bridgestone’s successful participation have translated into innovations that can be applied to the design and manufacture of tyres.
“In addition, its collaboration with F1 has contributed to increased brand awareness and the recognition of Bridgestone as a leader in the global tyre industry.
“Having achieved these goals, Bridgestone is now poised to take its technological and brand building efforts to the next level.”
Bridgestone has been regularly supplying tyres to the Formula One championship since 1997 and became the sole supplier a year earlier than scheduled when Michelin withdrew after the 2006 season.