In the round-up: The Formula One Strategy Group turned down a proposal to save tens of millions of pounds despite two teams recently going into administration.
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Third team faces closure in Formula One crisis (The Times, subscription required)
“A plan to save every F1 team as much as £20 million a year has been passed over by the strategy group, the decision-making body made up of the leading teams, even though it would make little or no difference to the way teams operate at the track.”
No experience worries for Verstappen (Autosport)
Max Verstappen: “From go-kart to formula car it took a while to get used to, so I think that was a bigger jump than from F3 to F1.”
Welcome onboard of my #Renault clio at the @_TropheeAndros_ with DA Racing : http://t.co/Ed5O9lViI4 podium at the end… #r8main
— Romain Grosjean (@RGrosjean) December 29, 2014
One year on, our thoughts remain with Michael, his family and friends every day #KeepFightingMichael pic.twitter.com/44frwKAraV
— MERCEDES AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) December 29, 2014
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Comment of the day
Can Formula One afford to take its position as the pinnacle of the motor racing for granted?
The points about Formula E is very interesting too. So far, I think the series has been a resounding success. The grid is made up of proper racing pedigree, and the wheel-to-wheel action has been great.
[Series promoter] Alejandro Agag recently mentioned many major manufacturers are interested in investing in the series over the next few years. Fanboost aside, I think Formula E has a great future ahead of it, and if the series is managed well, and if F1 doesn’t reprogram itself to operate in the 21st century, it could very well eclipse F1.
Could we end up in a world where the World Endurance Championship and Formula E being the two top racing series with F1 confined to the history books?
From the forum
Happy birthday to Journeyer, Naz3012, Rick and Liam Stroud!
If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is via the contact form or adding to the list here.
On this day in F1
Happy birthday to former F1 driver Francois Hesnault, who is 58 today.
Following a season with Ligier, Hesnault landed a chance to drive for Brabham the following year, but it turned sour after a major testing accident. He made a final appearance at the Nurburgring in a third Renault – the last time an F1 team entered three cars at a race – which was fitted with an early example of an onboard camera:
79 comments on “Strategy Group ‘rejected £20m cost reduction plan’”
30th December 2014, 0:08
Not even a 20 million pound cut makes it through the Strategy Group? Is it the land of half-wits?
30th December 2014, 0:15
20 million is pathetically little. It’s like 2 million per team, and it’d probably be much less for the smaller teams. That’s like 3% of their budget.
30th December 2014, 0:30
I do believe that’s 20M per team, not total. (I don’t have a subscription to confirm)
30th December 2014, 23:54
I don’t have a subscription either but knowing Bernie Forkedtongue I reckon the plan was to switch back to the engines of yesteryear, I suggest the teams could save hundreds of millions of dollars simply by getting the drivers to run on foot instead of driving expensive cars.
ColdFly F1 (@)
30th December 2014, 8:30
It says ‘A plan to save every F1 team as much as £20 million’.
You do not even need to open the link.
30th December 2014, 10:52
Even if it was 20m overall, since when was a 3% saving not better than no saving? The answer to the cost crisis is unlikely to lie in one giant cut, it would be from lots of little savings.
30th December 2014, 2:19
It’s because the teams in the strategy group know full well that they owe their competitive edge to their superior budget. Of course they aren’t going to surrender it. This is why Jean Todt needs to start ruling F1 with an iron fist and stop letting the competitors choose the rules they compete by. Why the FIA chose to give the richest teams the job of resolving the financial crisis faced by the poorest teams is beyond me. Nothing will ever get resolved as long as that infernal strategy group exists.
30th December 2014, 3:13
is Bernie stuck in a permanent wink face mode?
30th December 2014, 0:20
People need to get it through their heads that F1’s problem isn’t reducing costs. F1’s problem is the fact that nearly half the money it generates is bled out of it and never reinvested. Why would teams need to reduce costs when 100% of the money they earn through F1 is reinvested right back in. If anything, they should be stimulated to create even more jobs and opportunities in these times when some other types of businesses are going under. Yes, there are less sponsors than 10 years ago, but that means that FOM’s unrealistic cut needs to be reduced, not teams’ already too small cut. Yes, FOM had a good run, but now they need to get back into reality, because most of the money there is, is the one generated by revenues, not sponsors any more.
It always boggled the mind (at least the one that wanted to think), how the few businesses that actually want to offer more employment and jobs, well paid jobs and also very interesting jobs, are forced to lay off staff when everyone is talking how there’s a crisis and shortage of employment opportunities. These are extremely profitable businesses but they are simply being sucked dry by a parasite, which means they are forced to starve most of the time.
But it’s a complicated issue and here also FIA comes into play. They are the ones (looking at you Mosley) who made a worst sale in the history of man kind.
Third player at the table are the teams. The teams are not responsible for this mess, but they do have some leverage. The problem is, just when they got rid of a saboteur in the form of Todt, Bernie brings in Horner, who, surprisingly, is even worse than Todt. I’ve always been saying that Bernie always lobbied so hard for Seb, because he knew he needed strong Red Bull. Realistically, Red Bull had no business having permanent seat at the commission. Their place should depend on their performance, but that wouldn’t work for Bernie who always needs one man on the inside, so that he can foil any attempt by teams to make any difference.
30th December 2014, 1:17
sorry, but you lost me between Mosley, Todt, Horner and Seb… were we still talking about the FIA? or were you talking about the racing? or the Strategy Group?
could you clarify what you mean at the end there?
30th December 2014, 9:31
@scottie Jean Todt would frequently torpedo attempts to do things that required unanimous approval from teams if it meant Ferrari getting or maintaining an advantage. Case in point – USA 2005. I’m not sure if the dissention was encouraged by Bernie as part of his means of controlling the teams, but that faceat of the team definitely changed when Domenicalli took over.
Horner is basically fulfilling the same roll at Red Bull.
The comment about RBRs seat at the group is also cromulent. Bernie’s comments about success and history don’t fly when you consider Red Bull have honestly had 4 recent years of success but nothing before apart from middling team performance & some long term sponsorship deals.
It’s really more about keeping Didi and his money happy, because he knows Red Bull will leave just as fast as the manufacturers if they lose money on F1…
30th December 2014, 10:38
Hmm – I actually think you’re onto something here! Without doubt Bernie plays the teams off each other to ensure that they don’t find consensus
Stephen Crowsen (@drycrust)
30th December 2014, 18:51
I disagree, every team has to work to a budget, which is largely dictated by the amount of money they can get their hands on. The amount of money available now is less than it used to be, and that is the part of the problem.
Jay Menon (@jaymenon10)
30th December 2014, 0:26
Hey..COTD! Thanks @keithcollantine..Happy New Year mate.
Prof Kirk (@prof-kirk)
30th December 2014, 0:31
@Comment of the Day
To me, WEC is a different beverage to F1. They have similarities, both being liquids, but the flavour and context of how you drink them is entirely different. You take slow sips at a WEC like a hot cup of coffee, whilst you gobble down F1 like a can of Coke.
– I can’t see them ever competing against each other.
Formula E on the other hand… It’s new, yet the same, its exciting, and sits right beside the can of Coke in the vending machine and it’s got RedBull written all over it. F1 need to reinvent themselves without changing a thing, something as simple as writing “Share a coke with….” on the side of each bottle.
– I can see Formula E becoming a threat in the future, but at the end of the day, nothing’s better than the original red can of Coke.
Jay Menon (@jaymenon10)
30th December 2014, 0:45
I dont want F1 to be eclipsed by anything!….but all Im saying is that if F1 doesnt not re-program (not re-invent) itself, then I think it will end badly. You’re right, on track, nothing needs to change, its the off track business that is hurting F1, the sport isnt being sold well enough.
Keith didnt publish the whole comment, the point I was trying to make was that F1 need the manufacturers, and they will only continue to invest if F1 was aligned to their marketing strategies…and with the technical freedom afforded by the WEC, on the long run, if F1 continues to live an isolated life, the majors could easily jump ship.
In other news, just have a look at this:
Where can we find similar figures for F1? Just look at the round in Germany!!!
Prof Kirk (@prof-kirk)
30th December 2014, 0:55
+1 well said, excluding costs (which I’m not going to pretend I know how it works) , it’s important F1 stays relevant for manufacturers.
30th December 2014, 5:59
Those are while weekend figures and therefore actually quite low. Remember quite a few times hearing total weekend attendance of over 300000 (120000+ on race day alone)
Neel Jani (@neelv27)
30th December 2014, 9:22
Great article by MotoGP, just sad that F1’s website does not even come close. However it was interesting to compile some data comparing MotoGP and Formula 1 race day attendance for 2014 on those tracks which are shared by both these events.
MotoGP – 118,918
Formula 1 – 107,778
MotoGP – 163,045
Formula 1 – 91,480
Motogp – 138,000
Formula 1 – 137,452
MotoGP – 130,925
Formula 1 – 84,688
* Figures taken from official blogs and websites
It’s clear to see where Formula 1 is loosing it’s charm, MotoGP or WEC or even Formula E are on a upward trajectory. You need not go far to see the difference. Simply observe how WEC or MotoGP or Formula E involves and serves its fans and you’ll see a stark difference with Formula 1.
30th December 2014, 14:53
Don’t say that! Bernie will be bringing in Fanboost next!
30th December 2014, 15:36
@neelv27, you do realise that the figures that are quoted in that article for MotoGP are for the race weekend – in other words, the figures that they are quoting combines the recorded attendance for the practise sessions, qualifying and race day.
By contrast, the figures you are quoting for the F1 events are only for the race day – so, in other words, you are comparing the attendance over three days for MotoGP (which is stated in that article) against one day for F1.
If you compare the race weekend figures, the picture that you then get is actually quite different. For example, the race day attendance at Austin was 107,778, but the race weekend was 237,406, which is substantially higher. Equally, for the British GP, whilst the race day crowd was 137,452, the total race weekend attendance figures were over 298,000.
The Spanish GP, meanwhile, claimed a figure of 205,000 over the F1 race weekend, so once you start comparing the events over the same time period, the situation reverses and the Grand Prix actually drew in more people over the race weekend.
As for the World Endurance Championship, yes, whilst the figures have been going up sharply in percentage terms, that is because they are starting from such a low base that even a moderate increase looks disproportionately large.
The 6 Hours of Silverstone race this year pulled in 43,000 on race day this year, compared to 36,000 in 2013 and 35,000 in 2012 – a large increase in percentage terms, but it is still a fraction of what the British GP pulled in on race day.
Even the biggest event in the World Endurance Championship – the 24 Hours of Le Mans – quoted a race weekend attendance figure of 263,000: whilst that may be their best figures for some time, it still means that Le Mans pulled in fewer visitors over five days than the British GP pulled in over three days.
Alec Glen (@alec-glen)
30th December 2014, 0:53
I think if the WEC picked up one or two special ingredients (a major manufacturer, one or two supremely skilled drivers) it could really eat into F1’s mindshare. F1 survives as the pinnacle of motorsport because everyone thinks it has the fastest cars and drivers, yet it’s long since peaked on outright speed so the only thing keeping it there is prestige and supposedly having the best drivers.
It would never happen but imagine if the likes of Lewis and Fernando left for a Red Bull team where Adrian Newey could finally work on a car with covered wheels and Jenson joined Mark Webber at Porsche. I’d watch that in an instant over a series predicated on spending more money to get slower whilst making itself harder to watch by ignoring how the world is now consuming sport and catering for a target market of the 45,000 Rolex wearing fans that make it to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
That’s an extreme example but it only takes one or two talents who are clearly not at the end of their career (Seb seems game for instance) to move in that direction by choice for momentum to start building.
30th December 2014, 21:59
The thing is, manufacturer involvement in the WEC is already higher than it has been in the past – we have more manufacturers than the sport has had since the late 1990’s – but the regulations the ACO has introduced to do that has also damaged the independent outfits (just look at what has happened to Lola or Dome).
The other thing is, is sportscar racing necessarily in good health? The LMP1-H category for the World Endurance Championship is supposed to be growing with the entry of Nissan next year, although the LMP1-L (i.e. the independents category) is expected to shrink to just Rebellion Racing.
However, the LMP2 field is not growing as the LMP2 teams are refusing to move across from the European Le Mans series, nor are the GT teams, so things are not necessarily uniformly getting better across the WEC.
Nor, for that money, is the money flowing into the WEC being redistributed around the field: let’s not forget that, due to multiple teams having to pull out due to financial issues, the ACO exhausted its list of reserve entrants (more than 10 entrants withdrew because of a lack of funding) for the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year, which meant that, for the first time in years, the 24 Hours of Le Mans had to be run without the entry list being filled out.
To a certain extent, the decision to move the manufacturers into the World Endurance Championship has also done a lot of damage to other series. The European Le Mans Series still exists, but had to eliminate the LMP1 category and cut back severely once the manufacturers left (they could only afford to run three races in 2011), though they have partially recovered since then.
Over in the US, the American Le Mans Series had been in decline for several years due to falling attendance figures and has now ceased to exist altogether, having merged with the Grand-Am series in an attempt to merge the fan bases of both series and to raise attendance figures to the point where the series can remain financially viable (and that is despite rising manufacturer interest in the Grand-Am series).
However, with the Daytona Prototypes proving to be far faster than the LMP2 cars, it looks like the LMP2 cars are going to be driven out of the United Sports Car Championship (at least one of the three teams which was running an LMP2 car has already announced they are switching to a DP car), so the future of sportscar racing in the US looks like it is diverging from, rather than converging with, the European series and LMP categories present at Le Mans.
As for attempts to relaunch the Asian Le Mans Series in 2013, that has, if we’re honest, been a failure – they set an unenviable record this year for the lowest number of entrants for an endurance race (six entrants), and in all of the races this year you could count the number of entrants on your fingers. That series has already collapsed twice (in 2007 and 2009) due to a lack of entrants, and I will not be surprised if it collapses again in the next couple of years for the same reasons.
All in all, I wouldn’t necessarily say that the whole of the sportscar racing field is actually doing well – one specific series, the WEC, may be doing OK, but given that the Asian series is barely alive and the US series is gone, I would argue that the situation is far more mixed.
30th December 2014, 1:14
Meh. Formula E has fanboost, its pretty slow, a single chassis, a single engine, the cars dont last a whole race. And their field is basically composed of rejects from F1 (Piquet, Senna, Heidfield, Trulli, half of Red Bulls YDP)
30th December 2014, 1:33
It is still the first year, no one knows if its going to be popular.
30th December 2014, 2:56
Rejects or not many of the driver are much better than many of the current F1 drivers, take Heidfeld for example. The fan boost even though I am not a fan of it, at least it doesn’t have as big impact as for example F1’s DRS.
In it’s first year they’re doing really great and we didn’t yet have any of the European races.
The battery technology it’s a limitation at this time but give it some time and we may end up having a better series than very badly managed F1.
The only thing that I don’t like at the moment it’s quite poor tracks, but as I said they will go to Europe in 2015.
30th December 2014, 8:40
Exactly. Remember that this is the first year. Yes, the cars are a bit too slow, and won’t last the full race. But, just like watching lower series (like local karts etc) there is a lot of action.
I hope they drop fanboost. It undermines the image of it being a sport.
Aside from that, it will (I think) next year move away from being a spec series, which should add a whole new dimension. Manufacturers will be pushing to improve. We should see a great leap in both performance and range of the cars over the next few years. I am genuinely excited to see where it goes.
As a side note, the FE site doesn’t seem to list ticket prices yet for London. Does anyone have any idea what they will cost? I’m seriously considering going down there to watch.
30th December 2014, 9:22
I think fanboost is a lot worse than DRS. DRS at least is fair, everyone gets it in the same circumstances. Fanboost on the other hand is a mechanic to force Formula E into
social media, it isnt dependent on driver skill, its a popularity contest.
30th December 2014, 14:45
Formula E has at least 6 drivers that probably should be in F1, so that alone keeps me interested to watch their progress. It’s rather ludicrous that there’s only room for about 12 non-paying driver seats in F1.
31st December 2014, 13:55
Do you know anything about Formula-E at all?
It is only single chassis this year, it then opens up to development which should start to see some really exciting things coming through.
30th December 2014, 4:35
Currently f1 is merely a pepsi max , the coke days are over.wec is like borbon and coke, yummy!
30th December 2014, 22:19
Fomule E will eventually replace F1, or they’ll merge together or something but we’ve got at least another 20 years to enjoy F1 I believe. :)
30th December 2014, 1:34
I think formula 1 is awesome. Sure the old engines sounded better, but your watching the pinnacle of automobile engineering. It’s fascinating to see what they can do with the different formulas. I don’t care if there’s 4 teams. I want to watch the best drivers in the best cars. Period.
You all complain too much.
30th December 2014, 4:28
Neel Jani (@neelv27)
30th December 2014, 8:49
+1. Thank you again :P
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
30th December 2014, 9:54
If there were only four teams you wouldn’t be watching any drivers in any cars.
The F1 rules only caters for two-car teams at present, and FOM would be in violation of its contracts with race promoters if it did not make reasonable efforts to provide at least 16. It’s hard to imagine how showing up with half that number, as you suggest, would be considered satisfactory.
I want to see the best drivers in the best cars as well. But the sport’s current financial structure militates against that happening. Letting teams go to the wall when we don’t even have a full grid of competitors isn’t promoting quality over quantity, it’s a failure to appreciate the current field lacks either.
30th December 2014, 1:40
Formula E has still to win me over, I went into Formula E very open minded, Its just not won me over & i’ve not been able to get excited about what i’ve seen so far. I watched the 1st 3 races live, Don’t think i’ll bother with live coverage for the rest, I’ll just Sky+ the highlights & watch those.
Not totally sure what it is but even when some decent racing is going on i just don’t get excited over it like i do with many other categories, I think part of it is that the cars just look so ridiculously slow & while I do like street circuits a series where the cars look very slow running only on street circuits just seems a bit…. uninteresting to me, especially as there butchering classics like Long Beach & Monaco I think to avoid laptime/speed comparisons to other categories (I heard they were slower than Formula Fords at Donington when they ran without tyre chicanes).
It also seems as if the cars are pretty fragile, Little tap of the wall seems to break suspension components but the cars are so slow that the drivers are able to drive around with the cars crabbing badly down straights which while amusing to see doesn’t seem awfully safe.
I also despise the car swapping, I get that its due to current limitations with the tech but watching drivers jump out of 1 car & into another with those pit stops taking forever as a result just looks ridiculous. If the cars batteries are unable to last more than 25-30mins then they should have gone with a 2 race format rather than doing this stupid car swapping mid-race.
And the less said about this silly fanboost gimmick the better.
30th December 2014, 2:45
Its simple really, there is no driver to get excited about. Like you I’ve watched the 3 races so far but in all of them I drifted away then came back to watch the closing stages. Vergne came to the last race and blew the lot of them away in qualy. Shows you the calibre of talent on show.
30th December 2014, 3:20
I think the camera work and directorship have been the real issue. The cameras are set too high and are having to give too wide of a shot to really show any semblance of speed. At the 3rd race they did have some barrier level cameras and it did help portray that these cars were rattling along at a fair pace for the type of track they were racing on. I also agree the track layout has not Bern great up until now, but it is year 1, I’m excited to see where it goes, I for 1 will reserve full judgment for the end of year 4, when we can get some idea of the development steps that are being meds as the team’s design and build their own cars and power trains. I believe Audi are already well along with the system they intend to fit into their cars once the regulations open up at the end of either year 1 or year 2 I don’t have the exact info to hand, but you get where I’m coming from. The regulations are going to be very open and I believe that bettery tech is going to catapulted into who know where as nothing drives ingenuity like good hard competition.
I applaud Formula E, not for being “zero emissions” but for being something new and an interesting project to watch mature and hopefully flourish.
31st December 2014, 10:57
Vergne had the advantage of coming from a full competitive F1 season. Maybe most drivers currently in FE could also do what Vergne did, or similar, had they just come from F1, who knows?
The fact remains that some of FE drivers could have had good F1 careers with a bit more luck. The right chance at the right time is crucial for success in F1 and it’s good to have a series like FE to receive some F1 wasted talents…
30th December 2014, 11:24
For me the car swapping is the single biggest turn-off when it comes to Formula E. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it’s worse than fan boost in my opinion.
Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
30th December 2014, 19:01
I agree. It reminds me of the old Le Mans starts where the drivers would run to the cars. It just doesn’t sit with me well at all in terms of being a motor-sport, seems a bit silly. I really hope they change this for next year and move to sprint races, or better yet, inter-changeable batteries.
30th December 2014, 22:22
For me the problem is the tracks used in Formula E. Here’s a 90° corner, hey here another one and another one here … oh well back on the main straight …
30th December 2014, 1:43
Also, I can’t really knock Bernie for not caring about twitter. He’s built a masterpiece of entertainment. Have you been to a race?!! It’s a spectacle!!!! Nothing touches it. Not the world cup, American sports, olympics…. nothing! Greatest show on this planet.
30th December 2014, 1:59
Though the sport could do with some more personalities. It’s too dry.
30th December 2014, 2:58
Neel Jani (@neelv27)
30th December 2014, 8:54
@toxic Nope, he is Bernie’s right hand man and this is Bernie’s way of ‘social media’ :P
30th December 2014, 13:57
No sarcasm here. I’m serious. It’s head and shoulders above any other live sporting event that I’ve been to….. and I’ve been to all of them. Not to mention the television coverage… that’s a finely tuned machine.
The guy is 84 years old, he’s built the sport into a juggernaut of entertainment. He’s put in 5 life-times worth of work to get it to where it is, let him enjoy it.
I see where he’s coming from regarding social media. The twitter isn’t going to sell tickets or television contracts…. and it certainly won’t save the Marussia’s and Caterham’s of the world. The reality of it is, (and I don’t mean to offend) that it’s a premium product aimed at the upper class. I think they’ve found their niche and are comfortable with it.
*Disclaimer* – I still agree with everyone else on the new engines. The sound stinks. I want my eyeballs to vibrate when those things fly by me and I want my knees to buckle when they downshift into turn #1 in Montreal.
30th December 2014, 14:06
No sarcasm here. I’m serious. The guy is 84 years old, he’s built the sport into a juggernaut of entertainment. He’s put in 5 life-times worth of work to get it to where it is, let him enjoy it.
I see where he’s coming from regarding social media. It isn’t going to sell tickets or television contracts…. and it certainly won’t save the Marussia’s and Caterham’s of the world. The reality of it is, (and I don’t mean to offend) that it’s a premium product aimed at the upper class. I think they’ve found their niche and are comfortable with it.
*Disclaimer* – I still agree with everyone else on the new engines. The sound stinks. I want my eyeballs to vibrate when those things fly by me and I want my knees to buckle when they downshift into turn #1 in Montreal.
30th December 2014, 4:31
There’s no way I can consider Formula E the pinnacle of motorsport if it keeps racing on bland street tracks with fan boost and ridiculously low top speeds.
30th December 2014, 5:42
How about nhra drag racing or indycars? They have top speeds and many dont consider them the pinnacle. What is wrong with street circuits?
30th December 2014, 5:17
Is the “Romain” (stylized) hashtag the most annoying bit of information on this round-up?
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
30th December 2014, 9:38
@faulty What I don’t get is how are you supposed to pronounce it? R-eight-main? R-huit-main? It doesn’t work.
30th December 2014, 10:50
That’s baffled me since the first time I saw it. Would love for someone to ask him if it means anything.
30th December 2014, 22:24
Well, a 8 is like two o’s: one above the other
Like the o in Romain.
I think it’s better than #Romain8 or something like that
30th December 2014, 10:55
30th December 2014, 12:07
It’s just his number and 8 slightly resembles the letter ‘o’, that’s all. He must be jealous of Bo77as en Carlo5 5ainz ;)
30th December 2014, 6:58
Looks like F1 wants to get rid of teams like Caterham and Marussia to avoid future embarrassments to the sport.
evil minds indeed.
30th December 2014, 10:10
@redbullf1 it is a valid thought. The only achievement the four teams (including US F1) managed in 5 seasons was two points and absurd levels of astronomical debt.
New teams coming to the fold need valid business models so they can grow and sustain themselves as much as feasibly possible.
Just pushing for the sport to lower costs to allow them to compete fairly isn’t going to work, even though it is what is required.
30th December 2014, 10:52
There is no valid business model without some measure of success. With the current structures the only way to become successful is to invest massively. There is no feasible method of gradually attaining success with reasonable investment.
Therefore the only “valid business model” for a brand new F1 team (as things stand) is to have an incredibly rich backer who is prepared to pump insane amounts of money into the team for a long time with little to no hope of ever recouping the costs. This is not a business model, and is only valid as a “plaything” for an incredibly well-off person or business.
The only ways I see to change this situation are;
1) restructure incomes and/or costs so a team can become competitive without running at an insane loss, or
2) restructure the championship in such a way that teams can gradually build themselves into a competitive entity.
I think point 1 is what most people are focussing on. Point 2 could be achieved by my earlier suggestion to create a 2-tier F1, so that teams in the second tier can run at a greatly reduced cost and work their way up. The second tier would have much more stringent development and resource restrictions, but could develop the skills and resources necessary to operate a successful first tier team when they are ready. This has both advantages and disadvantages, but I believe it should be looked at as a possible solution to our current problems.
bull mello (@bullmello)
30th December 2014, 17:58
@redbullf1 – Bernie has so much as said so regarding the lesser teams that he does not mind them going away. His words and actions demonstrate he has forgotten his own somewhat humble roots in Formula 1. What if F1 had helped to push out his teams early on when they had little or no success? Where would Bernie be now?
31st December 2014, 3:00
Bernie would be pushing little girls out on street corners in Bangkok if he didn’t have F1.
30th December 2014, 8:32
Strategy Group wants third cars? Maybe I should get used to the prospect of three cars/team.
Going to be fun when one team dominates. Those podium ceremonies… The chance of a fourth driver winning…
30th December 2014, 10:06
Indeed, it would be bad if one team dominates like Mercedes have this year, mostly for mid-tier teams. But even then, the prospect of a three-headed battle for the WDC doesn’t sound so bad. Plus, the good thing I can take from 3 car teams is the fact that I want the promising-looking drivers in better cars. Bottas in a race-winner? Hulkenberg against a WC in the same car? Grosjean, if he can summon his 2013 season? I’d love to see that..
30th December 2014, 10:42
@gicu Would love to see Gary Paffet in that third Mercedes
30th December 2014, 14:52
Thats IF the 3rd car is allowed to race the other 2, Especially given that the talk was that the 3rd cars would not be eligible for points.
Most likely a 3rd car would be used strategically.
Also consider that a 3rd car would cost teams more money to run (McLaren, Williams & Red Bull have already said they would struggle to run a 3rd car in terms of resources) so its probable that it will simply be another avenue for pay drivers rather than deserving talents like Hulkenberg, Bottas etc.. been given a shot in it.
3rd cars woudl also just shove the other mid-field teams further down the grid, reduce there chance at scoring points & put them under more financial strain & basically kill them off completely.
Look at WTCC & WEC, You have the big manufacturer factory teams running 3 cars dominating with the small privateer outfits standing zero chance of doing anything. Thats a big part of why the LMP1 category died outside of Le Mans & a part of why the ALMS died last year.
There’s also the risk that if you have 3 car teams & 1 or more withdraw then your losing more cars & what then, 4 car teams?
3 car teams should not be the direction F1 goes as its simply not a viable long term solution.
30th December 2014, 10:12
@f1mre one solution would be points awarded right down to last place – would give the mid-tier teams and minnows something to fight for, rather than the dubious ignominy of ‘most 11th place finishes’
30th December 2014, 10:44
@optimaximal Introduce something other than points. Let points be till 10th place, then from 11th to the end, give them coins, like 11 to 13 (gold coin), 14 to 17 (silver coin), 17th – end (bronze coin).. Then 3 gold coints = 1 point, 5 silver coins = 1 point, 7 bronze coins = 1 point
30th December 2014, 12:26
I like it!
30th December 2014, 9:15
@jaymenon10 “Could we end up in a world where the World Endurance Championship and Formula E being the two top racing series with F1 confined to the history books?”
Such a world would be a definition of hell for me as I hate both, albeit for very different reasons. WEC as every endurance series ever is just a high speed engineering exercise that has nothing to do with real racing. I understand the appeal of that for drivers but as a spectator I’d rather watch paint dry. I also don’t know why you say that Formula E has been a success. By what measure? the cars are extremely slow and need to be swapped in the middle of races. The races themselves are a mess of stupid penalties and confusion all round. And of course there’s fanboost…I watched the first 3 races of FE but would bother anymore, it’s just a gimmick series whose only success is to bring crowds who would never go to see racing, namely city center dwelling hipster tree-huggers. But I would never count on a crowd like that, they jump from trend to trend like changing a pair of socks. As for real racing fans? I don’t know if there was ever a poll yet, but whenever I look, be it here or other sites the general opinion among fans regarding FE seems to be unfavorable
But having said all that, I agree completely that F1 isn’t safe. And if it continues to shoot itself in the foot then my nightmare world you describe could yet come true. And that F1 is even mentioned in the same sentence as WEC and FE is the biggest proof of what a pathetic job the leaders of F1 are doing
30th December 2014, 11:00
How long will that continue when it moves out of being a spec series? I would wager that, within 3-4 years of that happening, we will see massive improvements in both speed and range. Teams and manufacturers will push the bounds of the drivetrain and batteries, and breakthroughs will be made. I am incredibly excited for it.
As for the quality of racing, if compared to the last few years of F1 (except this year), I believe it’s good. The track layouts haven’t been great, but even with that I have enjoyed watching.
It is not yet a world-class series, and is not even in the same ball park as F1, but this is the first year. I’m excited to see where it goes, both in terms of technology and as a pure motor racing series (as long as they get rid of fanboost!).
30th December 2014, 17:13
@drmouse I’m not excited at all regarding FE. The technology jump required to make it worthwhile is huge. I’m not sure where can that money come from. And it’s a part of a bigger problem: car companies have been trying for years to improve the battery tech to make electric cars practical for the majority of people and not just those who put eco-ism above practicality. They have failed despite billions of investments. That’s because all batteries are impractical. They have to be charged a lot of time, range is limited, they are costly to make and the process of making them/disposing of them isn’t very eco-friendly as well
As you could possibly see already I’m an EV sceptic. IMO any tech that has words like “range limited” and “charging the battery” together attached to it is genetically flawed, a dead end. It will disappear and Formula E with it. Instantly rechargeable green tech is the future that needs money and effort to be put in it, like fuel-cell for example, which ATM is even less practical or efficient than batteries but has far greater potential in the long term
The racing is good only because the drivers are good. But the series is trying very hard to ruin the racing with ridiculous gimmicks and penalties
30th December 2014, 11:07
I’d put touring cars/supercars before either of those series. You generally get amazing racing in tin tops where a scruff or a tap here and there doesn’t mean a cars losing bits or out of the race. You get to see some real gritty tough racing.
That being said though F1 will definitely be confined to the history books at some point (imo opinion) in the current couple of decades. Without serious reform anyway… As it stands it’s nothing but a grandeur waste(/laundromat) of money.
30th December 2014, 17:18
@skipgamer Agree with you completely! There’s real racing in tin-tops especially good are the BTCC and V8 Supercars
Two examples(for different reasons) of how not to do it though is WTCC(how is that series worthy of WC status I cannot fathom) and DTM(F1 wannabe snooze-fest)
Red Andy (@red-andy)
30th December 2014, 9:44
Yet more evidence that allowing the lunatics to run the asylum is a terrible idea. More F1 revenue should be distributed to the teams, in exchange for their input being completely removed from forming the regulations.
30th December 2014, 11:06
Mercedes accidentally release details of 2015 F1 car.
30th December 2014, 21:04
Comparing the shape of the air intake and the secondary cooling ducts at the sides of the intake, the chassis shown in that clip looks more like a mid to late season specification W05.
Here is an example of the W05 running with that style of airbox in Abu Dhabi (although, by the looks of things, they have been running that type of air intake since the Canadian GP): http://www.f1technical.net/gallery/2014/abudhabi-sunday/jm1423no254
I would wager, therefore, what you can see in that clip is a W05 being prepared for use as a show car (presumably as a static display piece given that 2014 spec cars can’t be used for promotional events), rather than a W06.
30th December 2014, 16:56
On Romain’s video. I love a racing series that has winshieldwipers on the side windows!
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