Japan’s leading tyre maker Bridgestone Corp said it is set to withdraw from supplying tyres for Formula One racing by the end of the 2010 season, owing to a changed business environment.
“Bridgestone ... today announced that it will not enter into a new tyre supply contract with the FIA Formula One World Championship (F1) series; the current contract is set to expire at the end of the 2010 season,” the company said in a statement.
“The company focused on the need to redirect its resources towards the further intensive development of those innovative technologies and strategic products which support the company’s goals.” Bridgestone has been supplying tyres for Formula One racing since 1997 and has been sole supplier since 2007.
Bridgestone, the world’s largest tyre maker, joins a growing list of Japanese companies quitting Formula One. Honda Motor Co pulled out last season, while Fuji International Speedway, which is owned by Toyota, said it would stop hosting the Japanese Grand Prix from 2010 onwards.