Motor racing-FIA ready to renew Pirelli contract

MONZA, Italy, Sept 7 Sat Sep 7, 2013 8:14pm BST

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MONZA, Italy, Sept 7 (Reuters) - Formula One's governing body is ready to renew Pirelli's tyre contract for 2014 if the teams and commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone are in agreement, FIA president Jean Todt said on Saturday.

"If everybody says we are very happy, then what is the point going to a tender?," the Frenchman told reporters at the Italian Grand Prix.

"If it is unanimous to go in a direction and then if I go to a tender you know what people will say?," he added "(They will say) 'He is against Pirelli so he does a tender to try to make it Michelin'."

Todt said he had discussed the situation with Ecclestone on Saturday and would meet Pirelli chairman Marco Tronchetti Provera at Monza on Sunday.

Pirelli motorsport head Paul Hembery said on Friday that the Italian company had agreements with all 11 teams and the promoter, leaving only the FIA to complete the deal.

French company Michelin has expressed an interest in returning to the sport, raising speculation that Todt could seek a tender.

Todt laughed off any suggestion that he favoured Michelin because of his nationality and pointed out that he had stuck with Japanese tyre maker Bridgestone throughout his years as Ferrari team boss while Michelin were their rivals.

"I know exactly what needs to be done but at the moment there are some discussions that need to be undertaken, some discussions with the teams, some discussions with the commercial rights holders," he said of the Pirelli situation.

"I know Michelin has demonstrated some interest. But at the end of the day we will do the things that need to be done. But I will not do something which does not create a consensus." (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Justin Palmer)

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