The FIA has given the go-ahead for Pirelli to continue as Formula 1’s sole tire supplier next season.
While the deal has not officially been confirmed, the FIA World Motor Sport Council has stated that Pirelli “may” continue to supply the tires in 2014 subject to certain technical and safety standards being met. But it also suggests that Pirelli would have to undertake an FIA bid process if it is to continue to supply tires to F1 beyond the 2014 season.
The Italian tire manufacturer has been on the brink of finalizing a new five-year deal to be F1’s control tire supplier for some time having agreed terms with both the commercial rights holder and all 11 teams.
FIA president Jean Todt recently told AUTOSPORT that he is happy for Pirelli to continue beyond its current deal expiring at the end of 2013 if this is what the teams want. The will of the teams is understood to be one of the key factors that will be taken into consideration in any future tenders.
Pirelli does now have a five-year agreement despite the apparent need to compete for the bid for 2015 and beyond, which is now enshrined in the new Concorde Agreement.
“One of the noteworthy aspects of the new 2013 Concorde Agreement is the new tender procedure for appointing single suppliers in the tire and fuel categories, for the FIA F1 World Championship,” said an FIA statement. “In this new process, the FIA will be confirmed as the body in charge of conducting the tender process.
“The Commercial Rights Holder will be entitled to run the commercial negotiations with potential suppliers, with a view to the selected single supplier being officially appointed by the WMSC.
“In order to cover the transition period and considering the contracts already settled by FOM and the teams with Pirelli, the WMSC today confirmed that Pirelli may continue to supply tires to competitors in the FIA F1 World Championship, subject to the requisite technical and safety standards of the FIA being met.”
The FIA has previously been able to put the F1 tire supply contract out to bid, but it did not do so officially for the 2014 campaign.