Minardi on Avons!

The Minardi cars have gone out to test in Valencia using Avon Formula 3000 tyres because there are no other tyres available for the team. The Minardi wheels remain unmounted in the Bridgestone compound, the implication being that the team was expecting to be using Bridgestones. The team makes no secret of the fact that it wants a deal with Bridgestone but at the moment no agreement has been reached.

According to the FIA Sporting Regulations and the Concorde Agreement, if there are two tyre companies present in F1 each "must, if called upon to do so, be prepared to equip up to 60% of the entered teams on ordinary commercial terms". As there are 10 teams in F1 the calculation is simple: Bridgestone and Michelin must be willing to supply six teams. At the moment Bridgestone is supplying only four and Michelin five. Minardi has asked Bridgestone for tyres but at the moment these are not being supplied.

Bridgestone will probably now need to explain itself to the FIA.

It will be interesting to see how the Minardis do on the slick Avons compared to cars using the usual grooved F1 tyres.

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