Avon Tyres, a brand manufactured by Cooper Tire & Rubber Company Europe Ltd., has been confirmed as official tyre supplier to the Italian GT and Italian Sportscar Championships for the 2012 and 2013 seasons.
The deal follows recent announcements that Avon will provide tyres to the European and Dutch GT4 series as well as Avon’s association with the British GT Championship, which began in 2006.
The 2012 Italian GT championship will feature a glamorous line-up of machines competing for honours in GT2, GT3, GT4 and GT Cup categories over seven rounds during the season. The home-grown Ferrari 458 and 430s will be among the main crowd pleasers and will be joined by cars such as the Porsche 997 RSR, Audi R8, Lamborghini Gallardo, Chevrolet Corvette, Mercedes SLS, Aston Martin DBS and BMW Z4.
Many of the teams have already sampled Avon rubber in the successful debut of the company’s fourth generation GT tyre at the recent Gulf 12 Hours race in Abu Dhabi. The Italian teams will run on the same 2012 specification including 18” and 19” tyre sizes and compounds that were used in the Middle East.
The Italian Sportscar Championship gets underway at Imola on 15 April with nine races taking place throughout the year. More than 20 cars from prototype manufacturers will take part in the series including manufacturers such as Osella, Lucchini, Norma, Ligier, Wolf, Radical, Picchio and Tatuus. All teams will continue to run on 13” Avon tyres, as they have since Avon’s association with the championship began in 2001.
Paul Coates, General Manager for Avon Motorsport, commented, “We have spent the last seven years developing and finely-honing our GT racing product in the Avon Tyres British GT Championship and have now reached a standard where Avons are the tyre of choice for competitors and series organisers at both domestic and international levels.
“We’ve seen a vast expansion in the use of our race products so far in 2012, with our GT tyres being used successfully in events such as the Gulf 12 Hours, British GT, FIA Euro GT4 Cup and Dutch GT Championships,” added Coates. “We intend to continue development of our products and increase further our involvement in international sports car racing.”