Heading home: Le Mans beckons

Michelin returns to familiar asphalt for the first time since Qatar, as the paddock lands on French soil

After a trip to Spain, Michelin return to their homeland as they gear up for the HJC Helmets Grand Prix de France, a weekend which marks the first time since the opening round of the season that a circuit they'll be racing on doesn’t have brand new asphalt.

The Le Mans surface had been brand new to Michelin in 2017, however the French tyre manufacturer were able to set a new race lap record and race duration record, something they will be looking to repeat this time around.

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The soft, medium and hard compounds, as ever, will be available to the premier class riders throughout the weekend. The front tire will be symmetrical, but the rear will be asymmetrical, with a harder right shoulder to cope with the extra stress that will be placed on that side of the tire due to the higher number of right hand turns. In the event of wet weather, a track Le Mans is prone to, Michelin have provided the Power Rain in the allocation.

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Piero Taramasso, Two-Wheel Manager of Michelin Motorsport, spoke ahead of Michelin’s home Grand Prix.

“After the last three races, where we have had to prepare for completely new surfaces, it is good to head to a track where we have some knowledge and race experience. Le Mans was resurfaced last year and we were able to test there before the race, so that assisted with the data and we had a very successful weekend, the tyres performed well and we broke a couple of records.”

Taramasso hopes Michelin can, once again, perform well in front of their home supporters. “That is obviously our target this year and it something very important to Michelin to perform well in front of the home crowd and all the members of the Michelin workforce that will be present.”