The president of Formula 1's controversial tyre supplier Pirelli says a new deal, which will see them remain after this season, is "close".
This year has been a difficult year for Pirelli: their 2013 spec tyres are dividing opinion because of the style of racing the high-degrading rubber has produced, and now the Italian manufacturer is embroiled in a new scandal surrounding a 'secret' test conducted with Mercedes after the Spanish Grand Prix.
Pirelli's initial three-year deal with Formula 1 ends at the end of this year and last week Director of Motorsport Paul Hembery threatened Pirelli would quit F1 if a new deal was not done soon.
Now, however, Pirelli's president Marco Tronchetti Provera has said a new contract is close after talks with Bernie Ecclestone in Monaco.
"We are approaching the conditions (to sign)," Provera said, "so we'll see.
"The fact is that Bernie is happy with us and also our company is still interested in the F1 project, so I hope we can get to an agreement soon and all will be well."
Provera continued saying he was pleased of the contribution Pirelli was making to F1.
"We were asked to add more 'show' to the races, and I think the races are better now than before our arrival, so I think in that sense we have succeeded," he insisted.
He then spoke about this year's controversial tyres believing Pirelli has not been given a good enough car or "enough days of testing" to develop optimum tyres.
Finally the planned changes for the Canadian GP are going ahead despite some opposition as Ecclestone proclaimed.
"I did it like the old days," he told Auto Motor und Sport. "I told the teams that they should be united.
"Pirelli will modify its tyres as planned," the F1 chief executive revealed.
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