Michelin boss Piero Taramasso concedes the inaugural Thailand MotoGP round proved a tough race weekend due to inaccurate information and having to decide tyre compounds with limited knowledge.

Following practice and qualifying Michelin recommended MotoGP riders stick with the hard tyre compounds due to the hot temperatures and abrasive surface at the Buriram circuit over fears of a steep drop in tyre performance over a race distance.

Rider Ratings - Thailand MotoGP

Every MotoGP rider yielded to Michelin’s recommendations using the hard rear tyre except Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro who conceded after the race it was a gamble to opt for the soft rear to fight for an optimum set-up with his RS-GP bike.

Michelin motorsport two-wheel manager Taramasso conceded its pre-selected tyre compounds were not ideal for the Thailand track and conditions having expected the race to be held in much cooler conditions compared to the pre-season test in Buriram.

“This has been a very complex and demanding weekend,” Taramasso said. “The tyres have been under immense stress due to the very high temperatures we have had here this weekend. When we came for the test we were told it would be wet and cooler for the race, so we decided on the range of tyres accordingly, but it has been the complete opposite.

“The guidance to use the hard rear proved to be the correct one as the race was exciting with consistent lap times and a great battle between Marc [Marquez] and Andrea [Dovizioso] at the end.

“The tyres performed well all race and despite the intense heat and the excessive spinning this caused on an abrasive track, we are happy with the overall performance.”

Tarmasso feels key lessons are been understood from the maiden Thailand round and using this weekend’s data will ensure more appropriate tyre options will be provided next season.

According to MotoGP rules, Michelin had to select all its tyre options for each round before the start of the season meaning the French manufacturer’s only representative data came from the pre-season Thailand test.

“It is never easy to decide on tyres so far in advance, especially for a track we haven’t raced at before,” he said. “With the data from this year we will certainly be in a stronger position to decide on the allocation for Buriram before the start of next season.

“I’d also like to say thank you to all the teams and riders for listening to our advice and taking the appropriate action to make the first visit here such a positive experience.”

Six riders on the MotoGP grid opted against the Michelin hard front with Johann Zarco, Xavier Simeon, Alvaro Bautista, Andrea Iannone, Jack Miller and Jordi Torres all selecting for the medium front compound. None of the riders picked the soft front tyre in Thailand.



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