REPORTERS – 09/04/2017

Features Reporters

 Liberty Media are looking at ways of shaking up the sport and one of the tense areas is the way the sports prize money is spilt. So what does he believe needs to be done?       

Todt’s warning about revenue

FIA President Jean Todt says that Formula One will not attract any more teams unless the sports owners Liberty Media shakes up its revenue system.

Liberty has made it clear they believe that the majority of the prize money goes to the larger and wealthier teams will be a major hurdle to increasing competition.

While the way the prize money is shared cannot be change until the expiry of the Concorde Agreement in 2020, Liberty has made it clear they want to change it after that.

The sport has a limit of thirteen teams, however, there hasn’t been that many cars in its field since the middle of the 1995 season.

Todt said “clearly we should be able to fill” the empty slots, but argued the revenue distribution disparity was the main stumbling block.

“The only way to fill [the spaces] is probably by a different distribution of the revenues, which is not one FIA problem. It’s a problem but we are not involved in dealing with that” he said. Todt view is, Formula One is the pinnacle of motorsport but it cost too much.

Speaking to Autosport Managing Director Ross Brawn said that he’s convinced that a shake-up of the commercial structure of grand prix racing could actually be beneficial for everyone.

He said “The costs are very important. My fellow directors have been brought up in a culture where sports teams are profitable ventures.”

Brawn says that the NFL is a good example because “There was a time in American football where there was quite a heavily distorted reward system and the top two teams got the majority of the money and the rest of the teams struggled.”

 

Honda has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons since the start of testing. But why did they think it would be easy to catch up?

Honda through too easy to catch up

Honda’s F1 boss Yusuke Hasegawa admits the Japanese manufacturer though developing the engine technology required to catch their rivals this season would be “too easy.”

At McLaren’s launch, Hasegawa said that he thought that the new power unit would match that of Mercedes. However, in testing the team struggled with the reliability of the engine.

In Melbourne, neither driver suffered an engine failure, but Hasegawa admitted the current engine is down on power and says Honda underestimated the difficulty of finding more power.

Hasegawa told Autosport “As a matter of fact we were thinking [it was] too easy, and it was too difficult to achieve the new technology – that was my mistake.”

“We did some good progress in the mono-cylinder on the dyno, but as soon as we complete the V6 engine we had many issues. When we transfer exactly the same specification to the V6 engine it doesn’t work.”

He said by the time they discovered this it was too late as they need to understand the issue at the same time they had to confirm their final specification of the engine.

Hasegawa says that the new engine currently produces “almost the same power” as the 2016 unit.

 

Next weekend F1 heads to Bahrain, the race has been controversial in recent years. So will F1 listen to the concerns of human rights groups this week about the growing human rights abuses?

Renewed calls over Bahrain’s human rights

human rights groups have called on Formula One to once again cancel next weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix.

The race has proved controversial ever since the beginning of the Arab Spring in 2011 when the government launched a crackdown on anti-government protesters. Earlier this week, King Hamad ratified a constitutional amendment that enables military courts to try civilians.

With Amnesty International warned that the measure was so vaguely worded that it could be used to try government critics, including peaceful activists.

The letter from  the Gulf Centre for Human Rights, Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy, Article 19 and Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain, said: “Concerted and visible action is now required from Formula One, consistent with its commitment to human rights.”

“We call on you to suspend this year’s race in view of the alarming situation in the country.”

The government has recently stepped up a crackdown on the opposition, banning the al-Wefaq party and arresting several prominent activists.

Campaigners say Formula One would “become complicit” in human rights violations in Bahrain if the race was not cancelled.

Eyes will be on the new owners about how they respond and ousted CEO Bernie Ecclestone due in Bahrain next weekend.

 

In china Red Bull’s Max Verstappen started sixteenth on the grid and drove a brilliant race. F1 Vault looks now at how the Dutch teenagers race unfolded

Verstappen performs

Max Verstappen is once again a stand out performance starting from sixteenth on the grid he managed to get third in the race. Verstappen has proved in both wet and dry conditions that he can overtake, more so in the wet. Many times Verstappen has our hearts in our mouths.

That pass on Ricciardo was amazing. he had the better exit out of three and that allowed him to build the speed to be on his team-mate gearbox at four. Then on exit pulls alongside Ricciardo, gets ahead as they enter six and makes the move stick.

He said “That was not bad I think. I really enjoyed that first lap where I passed nine cars and from there onwards I think there were some good moves as well to overtake.

 

Well before the Chinese Grand Prix Red Bull’s Christian Horner predicted the team would be half a second down. But why?

Red Bull half second down

Red Bull boss Christian Horner says following his assessment of Ferrari and Mercedes he believes that the team has around a half a second pace deficit.

In testing and practice the new pecking order didn’t become clear and with the new F1 technical regulations didn’t become clear until the 2017 season opener where Horner concedes Red Bull were the third quickest car in the race.

Despite the deficit Horner is still optimistic after Max Verstappen push Kimi Raikkonen for fourth place for the entire race in Melbourne. He told Crash.net “I don’t think we’re that far behind. With Mercedes, I think we have about half a second to find. Ferrari have been very impressive and probably had the quickest car in Australia.”

“We probably had the third quickest car here and we’ve got to find a good half-second to get into the fight ahead.” He says that Max Verstappen did push Kimi Raikkonen hard all race but they didn’t have the pace of Vettel or Hamilton.

“I think it is still early days and the regulations are still very immature. We’ve chosen a different concept and I believe there is really good potential for development with our concept,” he added.

Horner has warned that the team was unable to show their true potential in Melbourne but feels they were half a second down.

 

That’s all from Reporters for this week.

Jack

Jack is responsible for the day-to-day running of Formula One Vault. He brings you all the brilliant content. Has an obsession with all things Formula One and anything with an engine.

Leave a Reply

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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.