A TRACK LIKE ONE OTHER

CAR (UK) - - Sports Car Giant Test 2018 -

WRITHING THROUGH hilly coun­try less than 10 min­utes away from Cler­mont-Fer­rand, Cir­cuit de Cha­rade is enough to give even sea­soned rac­ing driv­ers the shiv­ers.

Opened in 1958, the highly tech­ni­cal track even hosted the French Grand Prix for four years in the late 1960s and early ’70s. It was mod­ernised in 1989, ef­fec­tively cut in half, and is now home to her­itage mo­tor­sport events, driver train­ing and, most cru­cially, tyre test­ing.

There’s a spe­cial link be­tween Miche­lin and Cha­rade. The track is close to Miche­lin’s HQ in Cler­mont-Ger­rande, and its gru­elling cam­bers and tight cor­ners make for a stren­u­ous tyre test fa­cil­ity. Jerome Haslin, a test driver for Miche­lin, says: ‘Miche­lin doesn’t own the Cir­cuit de Cha­rade, it’s owned by the re­gion. But we do have a spe­cial re­la­tion­ship with the track.

‘It’s handy hav­ing Cha­rade on our doorstep and we use it for en­durance test­ing our sports tyres. It’s like a mini Nord­schleife, with good el­e­va­tions, a de­cent spread of tech­ni­cal com­plex­ity and some faster sec­tions – it’s per­fect for de­vel­op­ing our per­for­mance tyres like the Miche­lin Pi­lot range. If they can cope at Cha­rade, they can cope any­where.’

Just like our 2018 Sports Car Gi­ant Test ri­vals.

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