One of the talking points of Friday's opening practice at the Doha MotoGP was the use of 'pre-heated tyres', which many riders said did not perform at the same level as normal 'brand-new' tyres.

'Pre-heated tyres' refers to tyres given to teams at last weekend's opening Qatar round, but returned to Michelin without being used.

However, many teams and riders believe that by heating the tyres in preparation for possible use, then allowing them to cool before heating them again this weekend, performance is reduced.

By contrast, Michelin (which has provided the following Q&A on the subject below) says its tests show no impact on performance.

All riders have the same number of pre-heated tyres within their allocation this weekend, with Repsol Honda's Pol Espargaro saying two of each compound (soft, medium and hard) are pre-heated.

The pre-heated tyres are all identified to the teams beforehand and many riders chose to 'get them out of the way' by running them early in the track sessions, before fitting 'brand new' tyres for their time attack…

Michelin Q&A: Pre-heated Tyres

Why are there pre-heated tyres?

These are tyres that have been allocated to a team but have not been used, and while they were with the team they have put tyre-warmers on them and kept them heated to around 90 degrees C. As the tyres were not used, they were returned to us (as is normal practice) and then reallocated at a later date.

Does this affect the performance of the tyres?

We have done extensive tests on our tyres which have been kept in this pre-heated state, and these tests show that it does not negatively affect their performance. Our technicians carefully monitor and log the time that each individual tyre spends in warmers, and this ensures that none of the tyres is kept on warmers for anywhere near the maximum time limit. To highlight this point, yesterday Jorge Martin and Enea Bastianini did their fastest laps during FP2 on pre-heated tyres!

Is this a one-off for Qatar?

No, but due to the number of pre-race tests and the two back-to-back race weekends here, it has become much more apparent.

Did all teams get pre-heated and tyres, and which tyres?

Yes, all the teams have received the same quantity of pre-heated tyres, and it could be any type of tyre – Soft, Medium or Hard.