Dunlop tires will not be used in the Le Mans 24 Hours next year in any capacity.
After moving away from supplying tires in the WEC this season, the brand, which has 34 overall Le Mans wins to its name, has announced that it will not supply tires in the European Le Mans Series in 2020 either.
This rules out any chance of Dunlop tires being raced against Michelin and Goodyear teams at Le Mans via customers in the ELMS’ LMP2 and GTE classes.
Like in the FIA WEC, Goodyear, Dunlop’s parent brand in Europe, will take over the role in the ELMS to supply LMP2 and spec GTE tires.
The LMP2 tires used in the ELMS next year will be the same spec that the FIA WEC LMP2 teams are currently using in the 2019/20 season. The brand’s GTE class entries in the ELMS will run on spec Goodyear Eagle F1 SuperSport racing tires. It is therefore unlikely that Goodyear will feature in the GTE classes at Le Mans next year, with ELMS GTE teams expected to switch to Michelin in June.
“Goodyear is an industry leader in developing ultra high-performance tires for sports cars,” said Ben Crawley, Director, Goodyear Racing.
“Our WEC comeback applies our knowledge and technology in one of the most demanding championships in racing. To extend this development to ELMS means we get to work with a wider range of cars, teams and drivers, as well as showcase the Goodyear brand at some of Europe’s most prestigious circuits.”
This news raises the question about the future of the Dunlop Bridge at the Le Mans circuit, which has been a mainstay in the race since the very first running of the French endurance classic back in 1923. Currently, there has been no announcement regarding the landmark, though most other major races at the Circuit de la Sarthe annually, including historic, motorcycle and truck racing, are still set to feature the Dunlop brand.