Michelin and endurance racing’s hybrid prototype era

The 2020 8 Hours of Bahrain in November brought the age of hybrid LMP1 prototypes to a close. Introduced in 2012, these technologically-sophisticated machines notched up 61 world-class endurance racing wins, all on Michelin Pilot Sport tyres which delivered on their Performance-Made-to-Last promise. From 2021, the hybrid generation will make way for a new breed of Hypercars.


Michelin tops the order in Bahrain and Sebring

Michelin combined victory at the last round of the 2019/2020 FIA World Endurance Championship with Toyota in Bahrain with the win – with Mazda – at the 12 Hours of Sebring, final clash of North America’s IMSA WeatherTech Championship. Michelin claimed all the titles up for grabs in both competitions.


Michelin targeting 20th Nürburgring win

Less than a week after claiming its 29th victory at Le Mans, Michelin will be looking to showcase the Performance-Made-To-Last qualities of the Michelin Pilot Sport range of tyres yet again when the 2020 Nürburgring 24 Hours gets under way at Germany’s infamous Nordschleife on Saturday.

The 25.9-kilometre Nordschleife, which nestles in the middle of Germany’s Eifel Mountains, is this weekend hosting the 48th running of the Nürburgring 24 Hours which starts at 3pm CEST on Saturday.

“As a race, the Nürburgring 24 Hours is unique, with factory-run GT3s competing alongside much smaller cars, like the Renault Clio and Volkswagen Polo,” says Pierre Alves, the manager of Michelin Motorsport’s endurance racing programmes.

“The track is familiarly known as the Green Hell and probably the most demanding venue anywhere in the world due to its mix of sweeping corners, tight turns, long straights, features like the banked Karrusel, hills and part of the grand prix circuit which offers less grip.

“It’s a hard test for tyres, if only because of the big compressions, and there are even a number of crests where the GT3 cars leave the ground. On top of that, the weather is notoriously changeable in the Eifel Mountains and the sheer length of the track can make tyre choices difficult because it can be raining heavily in one place and completely dry in another. It can also be quite chilly at this time of year.”

Of the 2020 race’s 97 entries, Michelin is working with the majority of the 31 works and semi-works GT3 cars in the premier SP9 class, including Audi R8 LMSs, Mercedes-AMG GT3s, Lamborghini Huracans, Ferrari 488 GT3s, Porsche 911 GT3s and BMW M6 GT3s… These are partners that Michelin equips all-season long in the Nürburgring Endurance Series which takes places exclusively at the German track.

“Our SP9 partners will be able to choose between medium cold weather, medium and medium warm weather Michelin Pilot Sport slicks, along with a full wet and a wet for drying conditions.”

Michelin runners have won the last two Nürburgring 24 Hours and the French firm is this year chasing a 20th victory.

It also holds numerous records for the Nordschleife which is frequently used by car manufacturers to reveal the performance of their models. In 2018, the Porsche 919 Hybrid established a new outright lap record (5m19.546s) on Michelin Pilot Sport tyres in the hands of Timo Bernhard, while a Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2-equipped Porsche Panamera clocked a new Executive Cars record (7m29.81s) as recently last month.

FIA Formula E

The Michelin Pilot Sport EV lights up the Saudi sky

The Michelin Pilot Sport EV helped Nyck de Vries (Mercedes) and Sam Bird (Jaguar) to win the weekend’s two night-time Formula E e-prix in Diriyah, on the outskirts of Riyad. Michelin was a founding partner of the championship in 2014.


IMSA: The Michelin Pilot Sport’s longevity pays at Daytona

The long-lasting performance credentials of the Michelin Pilot Sport helped the French firm to make a decisive mark at the opening round of the 2021 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Notorious as a gruelling test of speed and resilience, last weekend’s Rolex 24 At Daytona on Florida’s east coast was won by the Acura ARX-05 of Taylor/Albuquerque/Rossi/Castroneves who got Michelin’s 2021 endurance racing campaign off to the perfect start. Michelin has been a major partner of the North American series since 2019 and is this year working with no fewer than 18 carmakers.


Sébastien Ogier secures his 7th WRC crown with Michelin

Sébastien Ogier won the 2020 Rally Monza to notch up his 47th world-class victory and the seventh FIA World Rally Championship crown of his career on Michelin tyres. The Italian event was the final outing of the French firm’s current spell in the FIA WRC which has seen it harvest no fewer than 347 victories, 1,037 podium placings and 58 Drivers’ and Manufacturers’ world titles since the competition’s creation in 1973, aided by a long list of technological innovations and close working relationships with its driver and carmaker partners.


MotoGP™: Miguel Oliveira reigns supreme on home soil

The final clash of the 2020 MotoGPTM World Championship at Portimão was won in assertive fashion by local star Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3). The Grande Prémio MEO de Portugal’s pole-sitter comfortably outdistanced Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) and Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) who made it three different bikemakers and two different MICHELIN Power Slick pairings on the podium.

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