Franz Tost, Toro Rosso, Circuit de Catalunys, 2019

“New leisure generation” won’t accept longer F1 calendar – Tost

2019 F1 season

Posted on

| Written by and

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost believes opposition to extending the Formula 1 calendar is coming from what he calls the “new leisure generation”.

F1 owners Liberty Media has indicated it wants to extend the schedule beyond its current 21 races in 2019. It has already signed a deal for Vietnam to join the 2020 F1 calendar.

Speaking to RaceFans and other media at the Circuit de Catalunya, Tost said he is in favour of adding more races. “For me personally I don’t have a problem if there are 23, 24 races. I don’t care about this, it’s fine.

“Every second you are not on a race track is a loss in your life. Therefore it’s good, be happy to be there. I am happy to be at a race track. What do you do at home? It’s useless. Discuss with your wife nonsense. Therefore be happy to be at the racetrack. So that’s my personal point of view.”

Tost admitted Toro Rosso has had to take some steps to reduce the impact of the growing F1 calendar on its staff. “Of course regarding the mechanics [it’s] a little bit more difficult because they have families at home and also they have to be sometimes at home.

“Nevertheless we at Toro Rosso found quite a good way because the mechanics between the races are many times at home and have some days off. And we have another crew building up the cars.

“But if the number of the races increases of course we have to think to bring in even more mechanics. Also from the engineering side it’s a little bit more difficult.”

However Tost pointed out the F1 schedule has been more demanding in the past, and believes changing lifestyles are why people are less willing to accept a longer calendar.

“Seven, eight, 10 years ago we had after each race two or three test days – and at the beginning even with two cars. It was possible because it was same engineers, most of time was of the same mechanics.

“The main problem is a little bit our – I call it the ‘new leisure generation’. They want to have all of us more and more freedom and more and more leisure time and to do work less. And I think this is the main problem. But otherwise from the workload it’s okay.”

Read Dieter Rencken’s exclusive interview with Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost in today’s edition of RacingLines on RaceFans

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2019 F1 season

Browse all 2019 F1 season articles

Author information

Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

27 comments on ““New leisure generation” won’t accept longer F1 calendar – Tost”

  1. Todd (@braketurnaccelerate)
    20th February 2019, 8:34

    What a shrewd man. Driver’s from Tost’s generation ran a whopping 14-17 races a year, with only 4-6 of those actual flyaway races.

    1. Great family man /s. Doesn’t seem to care about others personal life..

      1. “Discuss with your wife nonsense” he says.
        I don’t think he cares about his “loved ones”‘ personal life either…

    2. Every second you are not on a race track is a loss in your life. Therefore it’s good, be happy to be there. I am happy to be at a race track. What do you do at home? It’s useless. Discuss with your wife nonsense. Therefore be happy to be at the racetrack. So that’s my personal point of view.

      He’s got to understand that his personal point of view cannot be applied to everyone who works at Toro Rosso. He’s driven by his work, while many others in the company will be driven by something else. While his company is undoubtedly an aspirational workplace for many, it cannot be the only thing for everyone.

    3. I think he talks complete sense – there’s no point wanting to be an F1 mechanic AND have a perfect family life. Going to 24 races from 21 won’t ruin your family life, the first 21 will ensure that. So if you want to be an F1 mechanic, do it…just don’t expect to be able to have a perfect wife, children and home life at the same time.

      You have to pick your compromises in life, it’s no good expecting to be able to have everything. There’s a reason Adrian Newey’s first wife left him while he was away at the races and his second wife called him ‘the most selfish man she’s ever met’.

      1. You have to pick your compromises in life, it’s no good expecting to be able to have everything.

        why not have both? good family time and a professional career that fulfills your goals? It’s not like these guys are researching the cure for cancer, there’s no higher meaning to their work, it’s just a motoring competition for people like us to enjoy and for brands to show off their prowess. Why is it that important to spend your entire life on track, so we can have 25 races per year but half of them are boring on tracks that are uninspired at best? So Liberty can make more money?

        1. You try tucking your 3 year old into bed and reading him a story while rebuilding a gearbox in Singapore. Tell me how well that works for you.

          1. @joshgeake not sure if you are joking or not, but i was obviously not saying to do both at the same time. The discussion was regarding time off-track (i.e off race weekends) when staff is at home. If there are 4-5 races added to a season, this time off (like the summer break, or the weeks in between races) will not exist anymore.

    4. @braketurnaccelerate @maxv I couldn’t have put it any better than you did. I couldn’t agree more with you two.

  2. Franz and the New Leisure Generation.
    -The Greatest Hits. Includes the classics RedBull Reign, Ricciardo Beret, and Little RedBull Vette.

    1. In 1999 they still knew how to party :-)

  3. “What do you do at home? It’s useless. Discuss with your wife nonsense”
    Must be a joy to be Mrs. Tost or work for this bitter old man.

    1. It depends on your wife. Frank Williams was very much the same yet his wife adored him.

      “The leisure generation”. For the most part I would call them the “useless generation”.

      Pick another sport/profession if your not willing to put in the hours.

      Go hard or go home!

      1. Pick another sport/profession if your not willing to put in the hours.

        Exactly. This is Formula 1. No one is here by accident. The route to get here is full of sacrifice

        1. The sacrifice should be in the same sphere as what you gain. As an F1 team member, you can fulfill your passions in a challenging place to work. You sacrifice a relatively higher salary that you would get working for a major automobile company and the relative job security.

          Why should your job demand sacrifices in your personal life? Just because Tost finds it boring to talk to his wife, does it mean that others in the team find their personal conversations boring?

      2. *Reads comment about Tost and his wife*

        “Let’s not make sweeping generalisations here.”

        *Immediately makes sweeping generalisation*

        Loving your logic there, Coanda.

  4. Short answer (to this specific topic/suggestion): No.
    Long answer: This whole time, I’ve had mixed views about the suggestion of increasing the number of races in general. For me, personally, it wouldn’t really make a difference as I don’t travel to the races, but for the sake of the travelling teams, I hope it wouldn’t happen as the current number is already at the saturation point. 21 is perfectly fine from the POV of all the aspects be it revenue/income, exposure of the sport, anything, so no need to go beyond that figure. Anything from the range of 19-21 (where the number of races has varied during this decade so far) is perfectly fine for F1.

    #IfItAintBrokeDontFixIt #QualityOverQuantity

  5. Tost has a problem, most of the times he is being sarcastic, but it is hard to tell from an article, worse, is harder to tell because he speaks always in the same register, so I have no idea what to make of this statements to be honest.

  6. …the ‘new leisure generation’. They want to have all of us more and more freedom and more and more leisure time and to do work less.

    Everyone is working more, for what seems to be lower wages (real terms (UK perspective)) in less secure work.
    I’m a mechanical engineering student graduating this summer – trying to get a job in F1, just motorsport alone, is proving to be incredibly difficult. The generalisation of my generation being “lazy gap yahh” wannabees is rather annoying to be labeled with.

    As a fan, I think the current amount of races is ideal for viewership. Crucially, the historic race tracks should be given priority on the calendar!

  7. “Every second you are not on a race track is a loss in your life. Therefore it’s good, be happy to be there. I am happy to be at a race track. What do you do at home? It’s useless. Discuss with your wife nonsense. Therefore be happy to be at the racetrack. So that’s my personal point of view.”

    Franz Tost, the man from the Australopithecus generation.

  8. I usually find what Franz says a little hit & miss but he was pretty open & honest in this interview.

    Yes being in F1 means not having a ‘normal’ life but that doesn’t mean employees should expect no family life in lieu of being in F1. Many would know ‘Big Nige’ at Red Bull, big bloke with the tats, he has been there since it was Benetton, its a lifestyle for him. But that’s not for everyone, I think current amount of 21 races seems pretty good.

    Funny comment about at home talking nonsense with the wife- sounds bad but maybe that’s how it works for them, its his job and that how they do it.

    Most teams now will roster non-essential staff like the PR team and things like that, the ones I have spoken to at Red Bull do 12-15 races, but that’s not possible for drivers, managers, and essential engineers & mechanics- there has to some limit and I think its about right.

  9. Just curious, is Franz Tost married? A quick google was inconclusive and every image I can find of him shows that he doesn’t wear a wedding ring (which I admit is not conclusive evidence by any means).

    Now I know F1 types are notoriously selfish and unusually dedicated to their jobs, however if Franz had a partner and cared about them even half as much as I love my wife, he’d realise just how ridiculous that statement is. In my last job I travelled all the time and spent the entire week in a different country from my wife. The result of this routine? I was miserable, my performance suffered and I left the role. People are human at the end of the day and they do have interests outside of work, even if their line of work is one many of us would give our right arms to do. People need their down time and its only right they get it. Even as an obsessed fan I have to admit the current season is too long.

    1. And THAT is the key to the situation. Some people (and their wives / significant others) can tolerate the travelling and the long periods of separation because they value the excitement and rewards of being a part of an F1 team. Others can’t, and sooner or later they drop out, and seek less demanding positions elsewhere.

      It’s a situation that is mirrored in loads of other professions related to sport or entertainment – think about the demands on a roadie for a Rolling Stones World Tour, for example.

  10. Dutchguy (@justarandomdutchguy)
    20th February 2019, 12:43

    Jeez. there’s not enough Red Bull in the world to dilate all this salt

  11. It is my understanding that with the calendar approaching 25 races, most teams are looking at an option to basically maintain two sets of crews, each covering races it their half of the globe. Which would certainly cost lot of money. But as a longtime F1 fan, I am not really interested in such extended calendar either, and would be happy to cap the season at some 18 races. There is really no time to absorb one race, before the next one is already underway…it becomes a blur, especially now, when one team is winning 74% of the time!

  12. Gee, he sounds like a lot of fun to be around.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments are moderated. See the Comment Policy and FAQ for more.
If the person you're replying to is a registered user you can notify them of your reply using '@username'.