Bridgestone responds

Bridgestone has confirmed that it has received a request from Minardi to supply the team with tyres in 2003 but says that "discussions are still ongoing and the negotiations are not yet completed".

A Bridgestone spokeswoman was not able to explain why it has taken so long for the talks to reach an agreement - which Bridgestone must according to the F1 rules. Minardi says that the first contact was made on October 17 last year - more than three months ago. The man responsible for the process is Bridgestone Motorsport boss Hiroshi Yasukawa, who is currently in Japan.

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