Bridgestone has announced that its role as official tyre supplier to the MotoGP world championship will end at the end of the 2015 campaign.
The Japanese factory has been involved in MotoGP since 2002 and became the exclusive official supplier when the premier class introduced a single tyre rule for the 2009 season onwards.
Bridgestone’s current three-year deal expires at the end of the current season but the Japanese brand has signed a one-year extension before confirming it will leave at the end of 2015.
That paves the way for Michelin, Pirelli or Dunlop to be the sole tyre supplier in MotoGP for 2016, when controlled electronics are introduced for all entries in the premier class.
Dorna today confirmed that it was taking applications to be the MotoGP tyre supplier from today (Thursday) and the tender will close on May 22.
In an official statement released out of Tokyo on the eve of this weekend’s Spanish round in Jerez, Bridgestone said: “ Bridgestone Corporation (Bridgestone) today announced that it will withdraw from the role of Official Tire Supplier to MotoGP™ at the end of 2015 season. Bridgestone has supported the world’s best riders with continuous technological innovation aimed at developing safer and better performing tires since it first entered the MotoGP™ championship in 2002. During this time, the development and supply of MotoGP™ tires have been a major boost to Bridgestone’s technical ability, and brought a number of benefits that have enhanced Bridgestone’s brand globally. Having achieved the objectives it set out for itself in MotoGP™, Bridgestone will cease tire supply to the series at the end of 2015. Bridgestone expresses its deepest gratitude to the riders, teams and all parties concerned, as well as motorsport fans around the world, for their support over the years. Bridgestone will spare no effort in fulfilling its role of Official Tire Supplier to MotoGP™ until the end of the 2015 season, and will ensure the same superior levels of product and support during the rest of its tenure. As a company engaged in enhancing the mobility of society, Bridgestone will continuously take part in motorsports with its full passion and do its best to promote motorsport as part of its new portfolio of activities.”