Monday, March 21, 2011

Bridgestone extends MotoGP deal by three years, ropes in Rossi as development rider

Valentino Rossi, Bridgestone Valentino Rossi, Bridgestone
The Doctor will now also work closely with Bridgestone towards developing their hyper-sports tyres for high-performance streetbikes. Guess we'd all be buying Battlax rubber now!

The Bridgestone Corporation has announced that it has signed a new three year deal with Dorna Sports, which will see it continue as the official tyre supplier to the premier class of the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) MotoGP World Championship. The new contract, which extends from 2012 – 2014, means that Bridgestone will continue to provide tyres and technical support to every team and rider on the premier class grid when the MotoGP championship goes from 800cc to 1000cc engines next year.

‘I am proud that we are able to demonstrate our ongoing commitment to MotoGP by extending our participation as official tyre supplier to the premier class with a new three-year deal. Bridgestone has a very rich heritage in the leading motorsport categories across the world, and MotoGP represents a significant part of this heritage,’ said Mikio Masunaga, Vice President and Senior Officer Member of the Board at Bridgestone. ‘I am encouraged that we can continue what has been a very successful relationship with the premier class of motorcycle road racing over the past nine years. I would like to thank the riders, the FIM, Dorna, the MSMA and IRTA for their support, in particular over the last two years as official tyre supplier. I believe our involvement in MotoGP will enable us to continually improve the safety and performance of our consumer tyres,’ he added.

Speaking of consumer tyres, Bridgestone has also roped in Valentino ‘The Doctor’ Rossi as their motorcycle tyre development advisor. Under an agreement that was signed between Bridgestone and Rossi in February this year, Rossi will work with Bridgestone alone as a professional rider – his MotoGP team and sponsors will not be involved in the deal.

Rossi’s role, as an advisor, will include his evaluation and opinions on the performance of Bridgestone motorcycle tyres, particularly in the hyper sport, racing and sport touring sectors. Bridgestone in turn will use his input in tyre development to deliver road tyres with better performance and improved safety margins.

Valentino Rossi is a great ambassador for our company. By having advice and recommendations of the greatest motorcycle competitor of all time, we will ensure that we bring the best new Battlax tyres to the market,’ said Takashi Tomioka, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Bridgestone Europe.

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