Michelin's tyre allocation has been expanded for the upcoming German Grand Prix, as the tyre manufacturer has had no opportunity to test at the resurfaced Sachsenring prior to the GP weekend.

Riders will have an extra front and rear tyre available to use throughout the three days, meaning there will be four fronts and four rears on offer, rather than the three fronts and three rears that are in the usual allocation.

The thinking behind the move comes from the fact Michelin has not had the opportunity to test on the resurfaced track, due to noise restrictions that are in place at the Sachsenring - a circuit situated next to residential and commercial zones.

Racing technical director Nicolas Goubert said the company "tried everything" to arrange a test there before the race weekend, as the new surface is bound to offer up a great deal of challenges. Michelin is concerned about the added grip of the surface increasing tyre temperature, he said, rather than excessive wear, as Bridgestone found out - to great cost - at the resurfaced Phillip Island in 2013.

What's more, the temperature range at the East German venue is an extreme variable. Morning temperatures tend to be quite cold for June/July, while there is a normal rise in the afternoon. Then, of course, the threat of rain is never far away.

Add that to the track's unique layout, with riders punishing the left side of both tyres through the ever quickening turns 5-11 before taking the plunge to the right at turn 12 - the infamous 'Waterfall' corner -, and you quickly understands the considerable challenge of designing the tyres with no prior experience of the new surface.

Thus, the French company has had to take "an educated guess" on what specifications to use. All front and rear tyres will feature the asymmetric design, with the left side a harder compound than the right.

The extra slick front tyre in the allocation will be a medium compound, meaning riders have a soft, a hard and two medium fronts to choose from. For the rear, the added tyre will be a hard. Therefore, there will be one soft, one medium and two hard compounds to select.

In both instances, the two medium fronts and two hard rears will have a slight variation in terms of the rigidity of the compound.

Speaking at Assen on Saturday, Goubert explained, "There have been no tests [at the Sachsenring]. We tried everything to have a test. At the end it was not possible because of the noise regulations and so on.

"We agreed with Dorna that we could have one more specification of tyre. One more front and one more rear to cover a wider [range]. So that's a way to cover wider conditions.

"Usually when a track is resurfaced the grip level is higher. So tyre temperature is higher. It does not affect so much the wear. We took that information and built some tyres but it's an educated guess.

"Phillip Island is exactly what I said. They had trouble with tyre temperature. Not with wear. It [the Sachsenring] is very asymmetric. Last year we experienced that. If you remember on Friday morning last year it was terribly cold. So we'll see."

By Neil Morrison

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