New Michelin tyre for Finland

Tyre manufacturer Michelin has introduced a new gravel tyre for this weekend’s Neste Rally Finland (26-29 July).

The company has developed a medium compound option to slot in between the existing hard and new soft tyres. Teams will still have the choice of just two compounds per event, but Michelin hopes adding the new tyre will give crews additional strategy options.

“Thanks to the broader choice we now propose, we will be able to finetune our response to the specific characteristics of each of the WRC’s dirt rounds,” Arnaud Rémy, Michelin’s manager of rally programmes, explained. “The existing hard and soft compounds already provide a versatile choice because of their ability to cover a wide range of terrains.

“Now, with the availability of three compounds, our teams will benefit from solutions that will help them be even more competitive on soft to damp, or even wet, ground. The medium compound will almost certainly be an option for all rounds.”

Michelin's new medium compound tyre will be used on the majority of gravel rallies

Teams will use the new medium and soft compound tyres in Finland, as they are better suited to the looser road conditions that the crews experienced during the recce.

"The ground tends to be less compact on Saturday's Jämsä stages," Rémy said, when describing the route for this week’s Jyväskylä-based event. "If the weather is dry, running first on the road on Friday's tests could be a handicap and dropping 20 seconds on a single loop can be hard to overcome.

"The stages on Friday and Sunday are slightly more technical, so average speeds promise to be a little lower than on Saturday, but they will still be very high – around 110-115kph."

Head to WRC+ to watch All Live from Neste Rally Finland, including every stage broadcast live, breaking service park news and expert studio analysis.

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