Bridgestone Say Schumacher Tyre Was Damaged
Tuesday May 16th, 2000
Michael Schumacher had to make an extra pit stop during the Spanish Grand Prix because a tyre on his Ferrari was damaged before it went on the car, Japanese tyremaker Bridgestone said on Tuesday.
"We have received the results of our analysis of Michael Schumacher's left rear tyre which suffered a loss of pressure during the Spanish Grand prix," said Yoshihiko Ichikawa, technical manager of Bridgestone Motorsport, in a statement.
"The tyre bead was damaged when the tyre was fitted to the wheel rim.
"This tiny cut caused air to slowly leak from around the rim due to the flexing caused as the tyre endured side and lateral forces during the race."
The German had started the Spanish Grand Prix on May 7 on pole position but finished fifth after three pit stops.
He remains leader of the world championship, 14 points ahead of world champion Mika Hakkinen.
His Ferrari hit the team's chief mechanic during the first pit stop and the second one took 17.5 seconds with a replacement mechanic operating the heavy fuel refiller hose.
He then came in again, after a duel with brother Ralf, when his rear tyre began to deflate.