DUNLOP CELEBRATE 200 CONSECUTIVE 250cc GP WINS
September 30 2008.

Dunlop reached a milestone when it won its 200th consecutive MotoGP 250cc Grand Prix on Sunday. As Marco Simoncelli took the checkered flag at the famous Motegi circuit, it marked an historic moment for both the tyre manufacturer and motorcycle racing.

Since Maxi Biaggi rode his Dunlop-shod Aprilia to victory at the Japanese 250cc Grand Prix in Suzuka in 1996, each and every race during the past 12 years has been won on Dunlop tyres.

Win number 50 came with Valentino Rossi at the 1999 British GP, Marco Melandri brought up the century at Brno in 2002, whilst Casey Stoner delivered the 150th in Malaysia in 2005. In all thirty three riders and five constructors have enabled Dunlop to achieve this bicentenary, with many of those riders now legendary in the sport. Two of them have gone on to win a total of six MotoGP world titles, with Valentino Rossi winning five and Casey Stoner one.

Although the current run of 250cc race wins started in 1996, Dunlop has supplied the tyres for the 250cc World Champion every year since 1993, and a 16th consecutive title is guaranteed in 2008.

Dunlop has also won 1331 of the 2561 Grands Prix held in all the solo capacity classes since the World Championship started in 1949 - more, therefore, than all the other tyre companies combined.

"We are delighted to celebrate this historic victory", said Sanjay Khanna, Managing Director Motorcycle Tyres Dunlop Europe. "Racing is very important to us. The technology transfer between race and road helps us to develop road tyres with superlative characteristics both with regards to safety and performance."

The significance of the 250cc class is underlined by the fact that 12 of the 18 current 2008 MotoGP riders are previous 250cc Dunlop winners.

"We thank the teams for putting their trust in our tyres, a trust that clearly pays off," said Jeremy Ferguson, Manager International Motorsport for Dunlop "The agility and aggression of the 250cc bikes with their very high cornering speeds with lean angles reaching 60 degrees make them ideal machines for tyre development - helped too by the level of ability of the top riders and the technical expertise of the bike manufacturers, Aprilia, Gilera, Honda and KTM, all of whose teams have again chosen to race on Dunlop for the 2008 season.

"Even though currently none of our competitors are challenging us in 250cc, Dunlop still continues to improve the tyres - in 2008 we have already evaluated more than 50 new construction and compound variants and introduced the latest multi-compound technology for both front and rear tyres.

"Front tyre performance is especially critical on these bikes, but must always be in balance with the rear to enable the rapid changes of direction that is a key factor in delivering the lap times that these thoroughbred racing machines achieve both in the wet and the dry."