Michelin still unsure about 2017 tyre tender bid

Michelin are in the final stages of making its decision whether or not to apply to return to Formula 1 in 2017.

The FIA opened up the tyre tender contract for the 2017, 2018 and 2019 seasons, with the current contract with Pirelli set to end at the end of the 2016 season. Interested parties have until June 17 to lodge their applications.

Michelin competitions director Pascal Couasnon has revealed that the decision whether or not to return to the sport for the first time since withdrawing at the end of the 2006 season still hangs in the balance and could go either way.

“We are giving ourselves a few days to decide but as we stand now it is at least 50/50,” said Couasnon to Motorsport.com.

“We have our ideas and we have talked about these ideas and we want to give the possibility to the teams to apply them well, so I would say that in the next few days we will finally decide and next week we will know what is happening.”

Michelin have already insisted they will not supply a 13-inch F1 tyre should it come into the sport, with the tyre manufacturer looking to make the diameter of the tyre bigger.

“It is clear that Michelin is open and willing to discuss things like this (the current diameter tyre) but we believe it would not make sense in respecting the tire so it will be extremely difficult for us,” concluded Couasnon.