FIA bans US F1 from competing

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The FIA has banned US F1 from participating in any of its competitions after it failed to appear at the first round of the season in Bahrain.

US F1 were also handed a fine of ??309,000 (??254,000), which is the same as the entry fee they paid to join the world championship, and ordered to pay the costs of the FIA’s inquiry.

However as the team closed down in March and its assets have been sold at auction it may be unable to pay.

The FIA’s investigation (see PDF here) reveals US F1 committed to entering F1 on December 3rd 2008 (the day before Honda withdrew from the sport). Their explanation for why they did not was as follows:

US F1 claims that the conflict between the FIA and FOTA and the threat of a breakaway series, the delay in the 2010 Regulations and the delay in the signing of the 2009 Concorde Agreement left too little time to implement the sponsorship programme and accordingly no sponsorship agreements were entered into.

The FIA rejected that team’s defence that. US F1 sought to blame a “negative media statement” from Formula One Management in September last year for making it harder to obtain sponsorship, which the FIA also dismissed.

Read more: US F1 officially out of Formula 1

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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35 comments on “FIA bans US F1 from competing”

  1. i think the fact they have banned them and fined them is somewhat pointless, they do not exist any more.

    1. Prisoner Monkeys
      25th June 2010, 1:13

      The objective is to stop them from coming back. They had their chance, and they blew it. Why should they get another bite at the apple?

  2. Bernie Ecclestone weilds a great deal of power, and his words carry a lot of weight in some quarters. After Bernie’s statement last year that USF1’s finances were in tatters and that they would never make it to the grid, it did seem that things went nowhere but downhill for USF1. Perhaps Bernie didn’t cause their misfortunes, but he certainly didn’t help much, either.

    1. But at the end of the day, what Bernie said was true.

      On top of that, the main reason for USF1’s failure was the heavy top down dictatorship by Ken Anderson. Was bound to happen.

      1. rumors were flying well before bernie’s comment, but surely his was the kiss of death.

      2. Sure, the main failure was with Anderson for not enabling the team to make progres, and the complete team management by not acting on signals/not even receiving them in time.
        I suppose Bernie knew of the troubles and was vocal about it to push them to make progress. But it will surely have not helped USF1 making it onto the grid.

        The penalty is only so the FIA does not have to return the entry fee to the USF1 administrator, as it is the same amount they were paid.

        But in combination with all the new rules making a new entry really tough it might spring some applicants to pull their bid for the 13th position out in time.

        1. I think the term USF1 was a bit misleading. This wasn’t a team persuing Americas US F1 dream, but Ken Andersons. Anything and everything had to go through him, hence the massive delays.

          There is no I in team Ken…..

    2. So does this hold true for his negative comments about the Korean GP not happening this year?

  3. FIA chasing ghosts.

    1. FIA being money grabbing ****s (insert whichever word you please). Surely a team going bankrupt and being unable to compete is punishment enough? I like the idea of banning them though. Seeing as the team no longer exists I think they’d struggle to compete anyway, and if it did reform with similar staff/facilities they could call it a different team to the original.

      Interesting that the ‘inquiry’ didn’t mention the fact that the FIA failed to give the team sufficient time to prepare or the conditions (the budget-cap) they entered under. I suppose if those results had been found, the FIA would have been forced to pay for their own inquiry!

      1. Sufficient time to prepare? There are 3 other teams who managed to do it, and Lotus with even less time than the others! And there was nothing stopping USF1 from working under those budget-cap conditions or just over if they needed to.

        Stop making excuses for USF1 or trying to blame the FIA, the only group at fault is USF1 and it is absolutely FIA’s right to hammer them for that. I support the FIA whole heartedly on this issue, fines and bans are completely appropriate.

  4. thats a point, they have attacked USF1 and banned them and fined them, but what about toyota, they similarly agreed to compete this year and signed the concorde agreement, do they not get fined and banned?

    1. Me thinks Toyota has a fine, well paid legal team……..that will worry many a person off.

    2. Well we do not know if / how much they had to pay! It might have been a substantial amount that went towards supporting the new teams. Maybe they did not get their part of the prize money for last year.

      But this might have been another aspect of why the FIA did not let Stefan GP in (next to him being pretty much without any assets nor money to back his deal)

  5. As much criticism as I will come under for this, I’m actually rather dissapointed that USF1, did not make it to the grid.
    This being, for the sheer fact that an American F1 team could have done wonders for the popularity of the sport over in the US, a market which badly needs to be conquered in my opinion.
    That and it would have been nice to laugh at them as they are lapped, time and time again.

    1. why should you be criticized? a lot of people were disappointed, and for good reason.

    2. This is similar to what I was thinking too. This is no way to encourage USA participation in F1.

      OK, fair enough, the team was in breach of contract and F1 isn’t an arena for rookies to work out what’s possible and what’s not.

      I also understand the need to set a precedent so anyone else thinking of a half assed attempt to jump on F1’s coat tails will think again. Saying that the judgement is still a harsh one.

      USA participation should however be encouraged as much as possible. There are a lot of of road racing fans in the states along with the massive following oval racing receives. I can’t help feeling that the media in the states will see this as a major snub with a wholesome rubbing of face in the dirt by the elitist Europeans.

  6. it took quite a long while, don’t you think?

    F1 is all about speed, and all FIA does is go slowly at everything…

  7. wait, the FIA decided that USF1 owe them money due to breach of contract? or am I reading that wrong.

    Surely there’s no legal grounds for them to stand on with this “fine”? Especially when USF1 doesn’t seem to exist anymore

    1. The penalty is so the FIA will not have to refund the entry fees USF1 already lodged with them.
      It is to protect the FIA from having to return this money to the USF1 administrator.

  8. Yeah just curious how the banning and fining is going to work. The organisation doesn’t really exist anymore and probably has no cash. Isn’t this a rather pointless exercise in futility? (Unless the ban extends to those directly involved with the team)

    1. The fine simply means that the FIA will not have to return the entry fee already paid by USF1 to the FIA, so no, the FIA isnt looking to be paid a fine.

      With that said however, they do go on to say that USF1 is responsible to pay the cost, whatever they are – I’m sure the FIA will make it a lot, to cover the cost of the action agains the team [IE legal fee’s, et al]

  9. As far as I’m concerned, US F1 had a very good defence (defense?).

    The FIA and FOM both made it extraordinarily difficult to get a new team up and running. Bernie in particular with his early and frequent comments about US F1 being destined to fail – that’s bound to make it tough to acquire sponsorship.

    All this is just another example of everyone saying they want F1 to succeed in the US, but their actions saying something completely different.

    I’ll be voting ‘disapprove’ the next time Todt’s poll comes up (previously always been ‘no opinion’).

    1. jsw11984 (@jarred-walmsley)
      26th June 2010, 2:35

      I don’t believe that USF1 does have a good defense all the other new teams were able to make the grid with less sponsorship than USF1 had I might point out.

      I mean, Hispania had very little time to prepare, they didn’t test at all, had stuff all money yet they made it.

      USF1 knew at the same Hispania/Campos did in regards to all the conditions and they had a multi billionaire are backing them, so USF1 have no excuses apart from they c****d up

  10. Prisoner Monkeys
    25th June 2010, 0:48

    I wonder what this means for the two USF1 spin-offs? The USF1 staff have reformed as the Cypher Group and have submitted an entry, while there’s talk that Ken Anderson has gone and formed his own team, Anderson F1. On the one hand, you’ve got the workers and the equipment, while on the other you’ve got the man most people consider to be the one responsible for the team’s downfall.

    1. Harry Ball Ox
      25th June 2010, 1:48

      Well, I think its fair to say that the FIA are looking to ban the entity known as, USF1, IE: Ken Anderson & Peter Windsor. The staff are just that, staff, and wouldnt be banned. But anyone who was a ‘Team Principal’, again Anderson/Windor would be banned.

      I’m curious to know what Chad Hurley’s exact role in the company was, as his title could, in theory make him also subjet to the ban.

      Also, who’s this new geezer that worked for Hurley as his ‘Rep’ – he’s been about looking to get into F1 and has a good relationship with Ferrari who are looking to supply him a car/cars. Although, I doubt he held any position within the company know as USF1 and even if he did I dont think his role would subject him to a ban.

      What I find interesting is this….

      Anderson/Windor, et al receive a life-time ban from FIA for not showing up.

      Flavio receves a life-time ban for ordering his driver to crash, only to see his ban over turned due to Flavio not being licensed by the FIA, so the FIA were without powers to ban him.

      Obviously, NO TEAM, including USF1 held or currently holds a FIA license so will this ban stick? Not that I can see Anderson filing a greveance in court to have it over turned, but stranger things have happened!

      1. Prisoner Monkeys
        25th June 2010, 5:05

        Windsor/Anderson haven’t been banned. The “USF1” team has. USF1 cannot re-form and participate in any form of FIA-sanctioned motorsport.

  11. Good money for the FIA. They were the first people in who made clear that they will enter in F1 in 2010 & they were the lat to fail, they promised a lot but all went for nothing it’s a pity. I wonder what effect if any will this fall on the USA GP which is expected to host F1 race in 2012.

  12. Man I will say this F1 is a very unforgiving sport.

    1. HewisLamilton
      25th June 2010, 14:41

      Unless F1 is wanting to forgive themselves for a failed race that took place in 2005 at Indy. Where were the “fines and bans” then?

  13. I think, whether the fines and bans are fair is not the issue. Of course fines are fair, the team didn’t complete the things it had committed to, end of story.

    The real issue, is why such a farcical effort. Which OBVIOUSLY never had any financial backing, could convince us and ESPECIALLY the FIA, that it did!

    The FIA must learn from this deception.

  14. Considering that USF1 announced they intended to race in F1 before the budget cap plans brought all the other applicants I thought they would be the best placed of the new teams.

    While the FIA/FOTA conflict, the delay in announcing the 2010 regulations and Ecclestone’s negative comments didn’t help matters from what I have heard the failure USF1 was down to bad management.

    Even though it was USF1 who were banned I think that if Ken Anderson or Peter Windsor tried to be part of another entry to F1 the FIA would turn it down.

  15. I just see it as so negative – this will put off any other new teams coming in to F1.
    Why fine someone? Just forget it and move on…
    It achieves nothing…

  16. I am not sure the wording actually states that another fine will be imposed – the wording is ‘…..a fine will be imposed…equal to the entry fee…’, which to me means the fine was the entry fee and is paid.
    Also the FIA accepted the fact that USF1 had already paid out to Cosworth and other suppliers in preparation to entry, so didn’t need another penalty – possibly since it no longer exists….
    Also, the Team ‘USF1’ is named as not being able to compete in anything run by the FIA, but individuals are not named, so there could be another US entry if the situation is right, or if someone else buys the assets of the team.
    Turn over the paper and discuss…

  17. I was pretty disappointed, although certainly not surprised, when USF1 officially went belly up. Looking back, it is no doubt for the best that they were never to get anywhere near an F1 grid. Had they somehow managed to show up in Bahrain, it certainly would have been a circus, and hugely embarrassing for everyone involved. Not to say that it wasn’t embarrassing, but at least no spectacle was made of it on live television.

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