Last year, the changes to tire compounds came fast and furious after Michelin’s hiatus from MotoGP during the Bridgestone spec-tire era, but this isn’t typical. Usually, the compounds are created based on experience from previous races and tests. Since each track is different, requiring different compounds, the tires delivered to events are frequently track-specific. For example, Losail uses an asymmetric compound because of the additional stresses on the right side of the tire since more than half of the turns are right handed. Also, the sand on Losail makes it more abrasive and requiring different compounds than those that would be used at COTA, for example.

Look to Scott Redding’s high-speed tire failure last year in Argentina for an example of how quickly Michelin can respond when necessary. While Michelin couldn’t do anything other than restrict the use of the tires with the potential problem on the race weekend in which the failure occurred, for the track in question, Michelin required the riders use a special tire with a stiffer carcass construction. However, Michelin’s engineers were able to create new tires that addressed this problem and ship them to COTA just a week later thanks to the three-day turnaround.