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F1 entry list published, USF1 are out, no sign of Stefan GP
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F1 entry list published, USF1 are out, no sign of Stefan GP
Posted By: James Allen  |  03 Mar 2010   |  11:54 pm GMT  |  132 comments

The FIA has published an official entry list for the 2010 season, with ten days to go to the first race.

USF1 are not on the list, having asked the FIA for dispensation to miss the 2010 season and start in 2011. Meanwhile Campos is now officially rebranded HRT, an unfortunate set of initials, which does not mean Hormone Replacement Therapy, but in fact means Hispania Racing Team. How long it retains that name remains to be seen.

Bruno Senna is named on the official entry list and it is interesting that although HRT was allowed to rebrand before the list was published, they were not able to confirm their second driver in time. This seat is now the only one officially available in F1 and Karun Chandhok is understood to be close to it.

There is no entry for Stefan GP. Bernie Ecclestone has said that the FIA is conducting a business assessment into Stefan and could give the team the green light to race next week if it finds a positive financial basis for the team. However tonight the FIA said

“Having considered the various options, the FIA confirms that it is not possible for a replacement team to be entered for the Championship at this late stage.

“In the coming days the FIA will announce details of a new selection process to identify candidates to fill any vacancies existing at the start of the 2011 season.”

This may well offer other candidates the chance to enter, like Prodrive.

Time was too short. The freight must leave for Bahrain on Friday and the 747 cargo planes will leave from Heathrow (for UK based teams) and Milan Malpensa (for Mainland Europe teams).

It is interesting in passing to note how international the team entries have become. There are nine different team nationalities among the 12 teams. F1 has become like a World Cup of motorsport, the idea that A1 GP had. Despite being based in the UK, many teams will race under licences from other nations. Brawn which was UK registered, is now Mercedes, which will race under a German licence. Lotus is Malaysian, Red Bull is Austrian, Renault is French, Force India is Indian. Meanwhile HRT listed as Spanish for the moment.

Going further than that, McLaren has two British drivers, Mercedes two Germans and Ferrari, unusually in its history, has two latin drivers, while Renault has two Eastern European drivers. There is something there for fans to cheer, pretty much wherever the come from.

Virgin has the last two numbers in the series, 24 and 25. I was up at Wirth Research today in Bicester, from where the team is being run at the moment. I went around the whole operation and was looking into their reliability problems in testing and finding out about their vision for the car this season. I also got to check out a state of the art F1 simulator. I’ll post on the Wirth experience soon.

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132 Comments
  1. Jesus says:

    James, not on topic but i think it´s an important question to ask. Do you know something about the protest that has been presented by Red Bull and Ferrari abou McLaren´s blown rear wing??
    Thanks in advance!

    1. Dale says:

      It’s McLaren so now we’ll see if the FIA are still anti McLaren now Mosley’s gone!

    2. JohnsonsEvilTwin says:

      Jesus, not so much a protest on Red Bulls side, just clarifucation of the rules.
      Christian Horner has said Ferrari are getting more animated about it than Red Bull.

      The hole stalls the wing allowing the car a higher top speed. Somthing that isnt allowed by “wing splitters” apparently. Mclaren have circumvented it with their solution.
      This will boil down to “spirit of the law” once again I think.

      1. Tim says:

        It’s more likely to boil down to letter of the law. Double diffusers clearly went against the spirit of the law but were allowed by the letter of the law, so are still with us today.

  2. Martin P says:

    The Telegraph, Autosport and Reuters are reporting the FIA has specifically excluded the possibly of any new entrants before 2011.

    If Bernie can turn that one around before Friday then Eddie Jordan’s an Irishman.

    1. M__E says:

      So your saying that you guarantee bernie can turn it around then, cause Eddie Jordan is Irish!

      1. TM says:

        I think that’s what he meant; i.e. what Bernie wants Bernie gets.

    2. Henry says:

      Well Bernie does normally get his way, if anyone in F1 can make it happen he can and I think will if he wants too. Eddie Jordan, whatever you think of him as a reporter has been fairly accurate with his predictions…

      1. Tim says:

        Would that be the same Eddie Jordan who said just three days ago that Stefan GP would be on the grid at Bahrain?

      2. James Allen says:

        Indeed it would. Crystal balls all round!

  3. jose arellano says:

    i hope they make the selection processs how it should be done the first time..

    1. TM says:

      How’s that?

  4. Alan Dove says:

    James great blog keep up the good work!

    Here’s something that has been bugging me

    – A driver has to demonstrate his ability to drive before he gets a race entry putting in enough miles in an F1 car to obtain a super licence

    – A team has to demonstrate it has enough financial stability to run a season of F1.

    HOWEVER an un-tested F1 car can turn up on a competitive F1 weekend Friday afternoon and have it’s ‘shakedown’ session when potentially 24 cars are pounding round the circuit a race speeds.

    I am no health and safety freak but this idea of Stefan or Campos turning up with cars they don’t haven’t turned a lap is very out of kilter with the all the other requirements.

    I don’t have a problem with it as such, but I can imagine a few annoyed drivers if they have 4 cars on circuit in shakedown mode.

    1. Ian says:

      Completley agree – surely this situation is just plain dangerous!!

    2. Lee Grant says:

      Mark Webber has made this exact point – he’s not too thrilled about it either!

  5. Craig March says:

    HRT… chuckle…

    1. auski says:

      Australia V8 Super Cars have had HRT Racing as leading term for many years.
      It stands for Holden Racing Team.

    2. Dale says:

      Will certainly be supported by women over 50 the world over :)

    3. Neil Williams says:

      If it is short for Hormone Replacement Therapy does this mean that their drivers lap times will swing wildly, will there be bouts of crying in the pitstops for no apparent reason? Does the cars colour scheme make its bum look big? etc. etc.

      And still now way for Jacques to squeeze back into F1…

      1. Freespeech says:

        Very funny, HRT’s bum looking big!
        Joking apart how can the FIA allow anew team to race when their car has had no pre season testing? If they suffer a breakage like Virgin did somebody could get killed, I personally think it’s madness to allow this and to my eyes the FIA are not doing their job correctly or do they think, like most other things that the safety of cars racing is nothing to do with them?
        I hope I am proved wrong and all goes well for the mature ladies of the grid, we’ll see!

    4. Martin says:

      They might have looked at the Holden Racing Team in Australia (where hormone replacement therapy is also the standard term). HRT has been the dominant team or a near front runner during the last fifteen years.

  6. Lopek says:

    Great news that the Vultures have been denied! Massive credit to Jean Todt, I have zero doubt that they would be in under the old regime.

    Now hopefully the FIA can manage a fair tender process for the free space for 2011.

    It’s laughable to note that of the 3 original successful teams for 2010, 1 failed completely, 1 failed and has been taken over by someone who did not tender, and 1 has successfully made the grid. Great job Max on that process!

    There is still hope for Prodrive/Aston Martin in 2011!

    1. Freddy says:

      Sorry, but there were four teams select as new entrants: USF1 – failed completely; Campos-Meta – failed and has been taken over by someone who did not tender; Virgin/Manor and Lotus have successfully made the grid.

      1. Patrickl says:

        Campos Meta was bought by one of the two investors. It’s still the same team too. Hardly someone who did not tender.

      2. Lopek says:

        Lotus was not one of the original successful teams, they got a place later after BMW Sauber failed to sign the Concorde agreement.

        The original tender process was for 3 teams only.

  7. GP says:

    Really looking forward to your story on Wirth!

  8. Malcolm46 says:

    Interesting the HRT could change their name, yet BMW Sauber didnt, maybe this implies that BMW still pumping money into the team and want some exposure for this?

    Having just read the interview on Autosport with Ken Anderson, it sounds like USF1 were actaully closer than people think, which is a shame, and he points out how high the bond was to enter F1 previously.

    I hope that as James points out, there is still the posibility for Stefan GP to make the grid, as with Toyota money making the car it should be half decent…

    1. Tim Horton says:

      I dont think BMW-Sauber were not allowed to change their name, i think they are keeping their name till they see the prize money that BMW-Sauber earned last year, and lost when BMW didnt sign the concorde agreement. Im sure they are hoping that if they continue in the same vein, and demonstrate that their team is a continuation and not a new team, they will be entitled to the revenue.
      As for USF1, Ken Anderson’s interview sounded to me like him trying to shift the blame of his failure as a manager onto the FIA. I think its pretty clear that USF1 had no chance of making the grid from early on, all they appear to have to show is one crashed nose cone, half a monocoque and some guys playing around with a small autoclave.

    2. Peter Jones says:

      I thought BMW Sauber would have lost the money owed to the team under the Concorde Agreement from last year if they changed their name.

      HRT / Campos are a new team and have nothing to lose.

    3. Spencer says:

      I think the fact that the BMW title is still in place is more to do with TV rights pot of cash than the FIA blocking the change. Campos didn’t race last year so there is no cash in the pot for them.

    4. Adrian says:

      I think that also has to do with the fact that HRT has no TV Revenue from 2009 to worry about whereas Sauber do…I think…

    5. Glen D says:

      As far as i remember, if BMW Sauber changed the name at short notice they would have lost the prize money from last years championship (Unless they had special dispensation).

      As a new team HRT/Campos have no prize money from last year to think about.

    6. Marco says:

      I would say that Peter Sauber got the team back dirt cheap with the condition that BMW stays in the name as free advertising … Quite clever actually….

  9. Steve W says:

    Why have Sauber kept BMW in their title? Seems a little comical given that they are not involved in the team anymore!

    1. john NZ says:

      I think it has something to do with commercial monies owed to the bmw team, and peter trying to collect??

    2. M__E says:

      this was covered in a post, something about a token gesture to BMW, or they have a small share holding in it.

    3. Ben says:

      I believe it relates to obtaining last years commercial income. By keeping the BMW name (For now) they get the money BMW were entitled to, but if they drop the name BMW then they don’t get the money as they are considered to be a different team.

      I believe Ferrari have said that they understand the situation and are happy for them to include BMW in the name until they have secured the money.

      Silly I know.

    4. Robert McKay says:

      Surely there’s some sort of significance that the new teams have no history and thus no previous season prize money to collect.

      Suspect it’s something along those lines – although of course that does not in itself explain how Mercedes managed to change their name.

      But I’d be surprised if it was anything to do with BMW themselves.

  10. Gaz78 says:

    No suprise there James with regard to USF1′s absence. Though i think if uncle Bernie is involved anyway with getting the Stefan entry sorted. im sure we’ll see them on the grid. I’m also happy for bruno if thats official, after his near miss when Honda pulled out before 09. Cant wait for Bahrain!!

  11. Tony Kulla says:

    I find it curious that Campos was allowed to change names so easily and yet Sauber is still stuck with that “BMW” in front of the team name.

    1. Radoye says:

      Campos doesn’t need to worry about 2009 prize money, BMW Sauber does. BMW Sauber did not file a request for a name change.

    2. Bim / Sweden says:

      If BMW Sauber changed names they would get in trouble when receiving the (comercial/championship standing)money from Bernie (Brawn lost it because of the namechange if i remember right).
      Campos or Hispania didnt participate last year so they don’t loose the prize money.

  12. Peter says:

    It’s unusual seeing Ferrari’s numbers so low for the first time in years! Sure they’ll be pretty high next year once again. However I’m betting that number 1 next season will still be McLaren and Lewis Hamilton.

  13. James, does this mean that the FIA have not yet decided the ultimate fate of USF1? Could we still see them in 2011?

    – Jeff

    1. Denis says:

      Ken Anderson thinks there is a chance. Read his interview on Autosport.

      1. John F says:

        I would be surprised if Ken’s Anderson thoughts have much weight to anyone now?

        If the team really deceived the FIA / FOM and many others (as has been hinted at on several occasions), then they better shut up and go out quietly instead of starting to rant and dig an even deeper hole for them …

  14. TG says:

    Now this season’s F1 has two things in common with international shipping – misleading national registrations and long, barge-like vehicles with huge fuel tanks!

  15. BiggusJimmus says:

    I hope they let you on that simulator, James. I wonder how you’d go. On other matters, it seems to me that even if Stefan are found to be financially sound, in effect they would be side-stepping the due process that other recent prospectives underwent. Can that really be allowed to happen?

    1. CanadaGP says:

      Another perspective to take is they really are the old Toyota team, they just took over it, and should be eligible for the old Toyota entry. It’s a shame that Toyota didn’t manage their F1 exit in the more orderly fashion that Honda and BMW led which spawned Brawn and Sauber. It would have spared us the drama and as a Canadian race fan, perhaps seen JV back in F1.

  16. Tim Lamkin says:

    There is a reason (none of us will know) why the Russians are not on the grid….makes you wonder.

    1. Henry says:

      Well its because their national industry makes ladas. Enough said!

      Russia has never had a motorsport industry as such, and although I’m sure If Putin wants to become involved he will, its a very hard industry to just create. Even though James has been stressing the international involvement in F1, you have to remember that Brawn, McLaren, Red Bull, Lotus, Virgin, Force India, all are based in the UK, and Williams (I think), yes investors and drivers are international, but the UK (and West Europe) is very central, it would be very difficult to summon from nowhere

  17. Sebee says:

    I’m a big JV fan, but FIA made the right call about Stefan GP. Plus that has got to be the least “speedy” sounding team name beside Snail GP.

    Sneaky of Sauber to keep BMW name in it – working on engine supply? Did anyone ever point out that BMW was wrong in leaving Williams? Did anyone ever point out how right BMW Williams sounded?

    Car makers really should just make the engines and let the teams do the rest.

    1. hispano-suiza says:

      ferrari and renault included?

    2. iain says:

      Ferrari just making the engines?

    3. TM says:

      You mean Williams BMW.

      1. Marcus says:

        They were actually entered as BMW Williams F1.

  18. Dave P says:

    James,

    In Autosports interview with Ken Anderson, he keeps banging on about being ‘bang on schedule till mid January’ that is unbelievable rubbish and is exactly why they should not be allowed back in.

    To be bang on schedule mid January the car should be ready to go testing the next week with the rest of the teams, yet in the same interview he speaks of building a car in 30 weeks! Nobody has ever seen a picture of the car or even a picture of a nearly finished car.

    It is clear that month and months ago, Bernie said they would not make it to the grid, so I find it strange that the FIA did not know this.

    Campos … errr.. HRT … is doomed to failure in the same way… So why has the FIA let them in?

    With no in season testing allowed, and having never turned a wheel HRT will never achieve respectable performance or reliability. They will be an embarrassment at the back of the grid. It seems the FIA is trying to save embarrassment instead of closing both operations down

    I am surprised the journals seem to be going along with HRT and not decrying it as they should. There is no point in giving HRT a chance when they just cannot succeed.. Look how hard it will be for Lotus and Virgin….

    1. TM says:

      I don’t see how the FIA could close down HRT. They have an entry. Mercedes didn’t have to reapply when they bought Brawn. If it’s not in the rules that you have to test before a GP then it’s not in the rules, they can’t make rules up and punish teams retrospectively.

      1. Dave P says:

        Hmm that is the FIA’s problem. By allowing un tried and non verified teams into a championship the inveitably put other teams at risk.

        If a new team turns up in Bharain, with an untested car, with Drivers who have never driven in F1 before, with no performance knowledge, reliabilty ( and thus safety ) testing it is a very poor state of affairs.

        Imagine HRT try to race, and as happened to Simtek, a front wing breaks off, killing the driver and or others… should this be allowed?

        The FIA could annul their entry for this year on safety grounds as testing is not allowed mid season, and as such they will be unable to verify the car for safety. Race circuits during grand prix weekends should not be allowed for testing because of the risks.

        So in my view, they should not be allowed to race…. this year.

      2. TM says:

        While I don’t necessarily disagree with all your reasonable, sensible and logical reasoning, I do disagree that they shouldn’t be allowed in, because HRT have, and are, following the rules as they stand. I don’t necessarily disagree (or agree) that the rules should be changed, just that HRT shouldn’t be punished retrospectively on a new rule. As everyone else, the car will have to be approved for safety in terms of crash structure etc.

        James or anyone- is there any reason HRT couldn’t at least do a shakedown somewhere? Lotus and Ferrari both did away from official tests.

      3. James Allen says:

        Well the freight left today, so there’s no time.

  19. Tom Adams says:

    James everyone else (press) thinks that Stefan is OUT why are you reporting that they may still get in.. do you honestly belive that?

    1. James Allen says:

      I said they are out…?

  20. FaithHealer1 says:

    Nice to have a bit of clarification at last. While it’s a massive disappointment for everyone working for them, I don’t think F1 will be poorer without USF1 or Stefan. Something that’s always interested me though, James, could you maybe shed some light on how the FIA allocates car numbers. I know cars 1 and 2 go to the reigning champion’s team and it works down last year’s constructors’ order, but why does Senna have car 21, not 20 and why do Sauber have cars 22 and 23, above Virgin but behind Lotus and HRT?

  21. Sebee says:

    An one more thing. Everyone has been talking about Ferrari and Red Bull, but I recall James pointing out that Mercedes’ best sector times combined at Barcelona was on the order of .5 seconds quicker than the fastest time of the week.

    I’m just thankful it’s only 10 days and follow up is week after.

    Go Schumi!

    1. JohnsonsEvilTwin says:

      Is that so?
      Very interesting indeed, I think there is more to come form Mercedes. ALOT more….

    2. James Alias says:

      I don’t think thats definitely the case. One would presume that if the driver drove the ultimate perfect lap then the fastest S1, S2, S3 times add up to the fastest lap-time of all?

      However as you know S1 at Catalunya consists of the max speed buildup from the start-finish straight into turns 1, 2, 3, which are the higher-speed corners, “3-right, 4-left, 4-right sweep long into straight 170″.

      S2 being medium, medium-high speed turns 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, “caution 3-right long bumpy, flick right into hairpin 3-left, into 6-left, and 3-left-right chicane stay clear of grass, 150 flat right into straight 180 ..”

      S3, “.. keep right into 2-left tight, 4-left, 3-right tightens long, caution blind 3-right flick right into chicane 2-left-right stay clear of red mounts, into flat right into long straight 200 into finish”.

      Ahem, don’t know it were really possible to give pace notes that fast? hence what I mean to say, I don’t think it’s possible to have a set-up which makes it possible to achieve best speeds in all sectors (unless the car is a Brawn 09 and miles ahead of competition), because set-up for faster S1 time means slower S2 time, faster S2 times means slower speed on straight and slower S1.

      Hence just saying, Merc isn’t sandbagging, and its really really competitive out there right now.

      Cheers!

  22. Tony Kulla says:

    I’ve found myself rooting for Stefan GP to make the grid. I’m just really curious about Toyota’s 2010 machine. Echoes of last year’s Honda/Brawn, I suppose.

  23. Jason says:

    I don’t understand this decision. They don’t want to admit Stefan, a team that has inherited Toyota’s infrastructure, 2 experienced drivers and no known significant financial issues. Instead, the FIA admits Campos/HRT, that has a car that hasn’t been tested yet, a driver with zero F1 experience and, up until recently, significant financial difficulties.

    It was clear that the admissions process for the new teams was seriously lacking — so the FIA should admit they made a mistake admitting teams like US F1 and Campos and allow Stefan to race in 2010.

    1. Alex says:

      It may be that it’s a tricky situation to which they don’t want to set a precedent of granting a team an entry so close to the start of the season.

  24. Chris Milton says:

    If only Stefan GP hadn’t made that crazy press release last week. It made them look petty, petulant and unprofessional. I’m sure the FIA took one look at that broken english and thought “NO”.

    Also James, HRT in Australasia is of course shorthand for Holden Racing Team, the works Holden team in V8 Supercars. A rather unfortunate and confusing thing for them if an F1 team starts being called HRT as well.

  25. F1 Kitteh says:

    Looks like the FIA denied us of #27 Villeneuve!

  26. Darren says:

    HRT “hot flush racing”

  27. malcom says:

    It seems nearly criminal that an organization like Pro-Drive headed by Dave Richards, wasn’t part of the initial group to be accepted by the FIA, for the 2010 season. Another legacy that maybe attributed to Max Mosley.

    1. Dave says:

      Pro-Drive should not be allowed in. They had an entrance the year before and blew it. Plus I would never trust Dave Richards.

  28. Rudy Pyatt says:

    It pains me to say it, but this debacle probably means that we’ll never see a U.S. team. I can’t see any sponsors ever involving themselves after this.

    I hope the members of the team land on their feet. They deserved better.

  29. Andrew C. says:

    Me… I’m not surprised by the release of the entry list to date.

    But, you have to figure that a great deal of effort, delay, obfuscation and behind-the-scenes politics were in play for the “FORMER” Toyota team/ cars to not find a place on the 2010 grid.

    Their signing of the Concorde Agreement followed by a month-or-so later complete withdrawal from the sport could not have gone over well with the “higher ups”.

    Seriously. Toyota were in the top five of constructors in 2009. There was a designed car with engine, team works, people, drivers and eager funding for the entry.

    But, oh… Bridgestone couldn’t find any spec tires to give these guys something to roll with. Yeah, sure.

    That alone is outstanding relative to the situation presently. Three of four new entries are not even race ready. Lotus — at best — are 2.5 seconds per lap off pace. HRT will have a second driver — to be named sometime — that hasn’t even turned a lap.

    Nice start to the season.

  30. Dale says:

    James it is my understanding that the FIA & or FOM could not allow any new team into the entry list unless the full agreement of ALL the teams was 1st given in which case can you advise if it was the FIA or the teams that were against a new team entering F1 in place of the USF1?

    I also find it amazing and pretty stupid that the FIA are allowing a team (HRT) to race with their car not having been tested, we saw with Virgin how they lost a wing, only found during testing, what if HRT have similar issues, this would be. could be extremely dangerous, where’s the FIA health and safety responsibility in all this?

    1. James Allen says:

      Good question. Will find out

  31. Olivier says:

    Good to see Stefan GP off the list. Jacques Villeneuve does deserve a better come back. I’d love to see him in a Ferrari from Torro Rosso. Villeneuve & Ferrari is always going to be magic.

    I am surprised to see HRT on the grid. Did they fire up their engine allready? Are they really going to have their first shakedown on a race weekend? I can’t believe they haven’t their second driver confirmed.

    1. Olivier says:

      wait a minute, the championship starts … in seven days! With a cargo flight to Bahrein … within 24hrs?!

      What the hell?! How can the FIA ever approve of this?

      Let HRT re-apply to the 2011 championship. Together with Lola, Prodrive and USF1.

  32. Kedar says:

    Interesting.. wonder how Sauber’s name will look like
    BMW Sauber Ferrari? and if they switch to cosworth in 2011 then BMW-Sauber-Ferrari-Cosworth?!?!
    I also read its going to be Lada-Renault somewhere!

  33. Rupinder Singh says:

    Hi James,

    Greetings from India and thanks for the very interesting insights coming from the pitlane.

    One question – Does this affect the overall points system? Given that the original points system was conceived keeping in mind 26 cars on the grid.

  34. krad says:

    James, do you think the fia are opening the process for new teams rather than just granting StefanGP an entry, because they are worried Ferrari would veto it when the teams are asked? Doing it this way they could fast track the process and not have to ask the teams and thus get StefanGP on the grid, even if they miss a race or two.

  35. tobi-wan says:

    I was looking forward to seeing Villeneuve back so I hope Stefan GP can enter.
    The only one of the new teams with a turn-key operation and not (yet) accepted.
    Fingers crossed they pass a financial inspection and Bernie can open a door for them.

  36. Josh says:

    Quite how the FIA can justify excluding StefanGP whilst including HRT goodness knows…really disappointed there won’t be a Toyota/JV on the grid.

    1. James Allen says:

      HRT has already signed the Concorde Agreement, Stefan is on the outside.

    2. Tim Lamkin says:

      Mike Coughlan….. is “how the FIA can justify excluding StefanGP”

      1. James Allen says:

        Certainly incensed Ferrari

      2. Rudy Pyatt says:

        And I’d think that prospect didn’t go down too well at McLaren!
        Quite a trick to get those two to agree!

  37. JohnsonsEvilTwin says:

    James what are your feelings on Stepan GP being excluded?
    If the FIA wanted to expand the entrants list as they have, and one of the contenders(USF1) failed to make it, why not replace them with Stepan GP?
    They have made all the effort and actually have a car, it seems a crazy waste to me not invite them.

    1. James Allen says:

      You have to look at long term. There is no place for short term thinking in the current situation

      1. JohnsonsEvilTwin says:

        James I concur,

        But surely this applies to USF1 and Campos(HRT)
        too? Stepan GP appear to be better suited to the long term if only because of better funding.

        Whats to say this situation wont rear its head in 12 months time?(going on FIA due diligence or lack off)
        Back in the 80s teams came and went all the time, I feel Stepan should at least contest some rounds, if only to measyre themselves against the othe newboys.

  38. Kuba. says:

    Poland is not Easter Europe and even CIA knows it.

    1. Mario says:

      Even though the Poles regard themselves as Central Europeans or even some of them Western Europeans, in the west they are always described as Eastern. That is because some 20 odd years ago they belonged to the block of communist countries
      and that was very Eastern idea. In human minds the border between East and West still lays where the Berlin wall once was. I am afraid Kuba, you have very little chance of changing that for the decades to come.

    2. VonSpeeX says:

      Hahaha…..i like it……iron curtain GP ltd

  39. Nathan Bradley says:

    James, I’m missing something here. Where are Sauber registered to, I don’t recognize CHE initials.

    Thanks

      1. Nathan Bradley says:

        Thanks James

    1. VonSpeeX says:

      I was thinking the cheq slovaks was getting in to the mix…..its turning in to the 2nd world war

    2. Denis says:

      CHE = Confoederatio Helvetica (Latin for Swiss Confederation)

  40. Peter Freeman says:

    Does it now become clear that the origional Max (I mean FIA) process was centered around anything but racing?

    I do think that anyone entering with the remains of the old Toyota team should have been given a place last year already! what is the point of letting unproven beginers (who then don’t pitch up at the last moment) in when you can have a real team? Who decided to do this?

  41. Paulo says:

    You can add renault to that list aswell

  42. PaulL says:

    James, were you still going to do a blog on F1 and High Definition?

    1. James Allen says:

      A report on HD is in the pipeline

      1. Tim Lamkin says:

        So does that mean we can read what you type “clearer”…:)

  43. m77t says:

    I feel the nationality of teams is becoming increasingly irrelevent – it’s a shame when the hard engineering work of a group of multinational engineers gets credited to one nation; especially in cases of the British-based teams where a large British engineering workforce often operate under a totally different flag

  44. Iain Mellows says:

    Hi James,

    Just wondering what you think about the legality of the McLaren rear Wing?

    Great web site!!

    Iain

    1. James Allen says:

      I’ll be doing something on this soon

  45. Bearing in mind that we nearly lost our Felipe last year when a spring fell off a car which was engineered to death, it seems we will have to depend on Dallara’s great experience in car design & preparation to avoid bits falling off the untried and untested HRT entry next week.

    Of course, any publicity is good if that’s all you are in F1 for and Sen. Carabante has made it clear that the business aspect is his primary interest. Let’s hope that we are only talking about performance next week and not some unfortunate accident.

  46. Estophile says:

    James, please don’t fall into the all too common trap of treating all the Eastern European countries as if they are one. You wouldn’t do it with Western European countries, would you? Or countries from South America or Asia?

    There are just as many rivalries between Eastern European countries as there are between Western European countries and South American countries. And while it is conceivable that there may possibly be a moderate level of ‘Eastern European’ support for Robert Kubica simply because he is also Eastern European, I believe it is highly unlikely there will be any for Vitaly Petrov. Russian support, yes, but Eastern European support, no. It doesn’t take too much knowledge of history or too much common sense to work out why.

    I am not saying that this is necessarily a good thing or a bad thing, it is just what I believe will happen. In fact I think the increasing nationalism in F1 is a shame, because not only will it increase partisan support for certain drivers and teams, it will also lead to an increase in partisan opposition (if you see what I mean) to others, and in my book that is not a healthy development.

    1. Mario says:

      What makes you think the nationalism in F1 is increasing? I think it is pretty much as it always was.

      1. Estophile says:

        Well, I’m just a fan sat by my television and my computer so I can’t really gauge it, but a lot of the journalists in the know (including the more respected ones such as James A and Joe S) are mentioning it so often that I get the feeling they believe it is going to become an issue. I may be wrong.

        It doesn’t change my original point about Eastern Europe though. After all would, say, an Austrian fan support a Spanish driver just because they were both Western European?

  47. Kenny Ramsey says:

    Hi James. Firstly as a JV fan, I’m absolutely gutted that there’s no return for him. That aside however, I’m really struggling to see why Stefan weren’t given a chance. The only possible excuse I see are either a distinct lack of will from the FIA for personal/political reasons or all was not as it seems at Stefan.

    Do you think the FIA will do the fans the courtesy of a more detailed explanation for the exclusion?

    Also a real shame not to see what the 2010 Toyota was capable of.

  48. I’ve counted 4 teams under the Cosworth name. I thought the max was 3, can anyone correct me on this please?

    http://twitter.com/pete006/f1

    1. James Allen says:

      Minimum was 3, to make it feasible for Cosworth

      1. Ali says:

        Yeah and that was the very condition on how new teams were selected: Cosworth users and non-Cosworth users.

  49. Rick J says:

    I completely echo previous sentiments of support for Stephan GP. If they show up in Bahrain they should be allowed to race. (Whatever happened to the two containers of team spares that were supposedly already there?) I suspect a majority of spectators would take this view also. With new teams allowed into the private club that is F1 several seconds off the speed of the front runners, more participants would probably result in better racing at the back of the field than at the front. If there is an increased danger factor, when have F1 cars been safer or offered more driver protection? Although I am not a JV fan would love to see an additional world champion out there – and also what had become of the 2010 Toyota’s. FOr once, hope Bernie gets his way (and never thought I would be saying that..)!

    1. Tim Lamkin says:

      My understanding was they were flying all their “stuff” over to Bahrain on their own nickel…is/was that true?

  50. Andy C says:

    So now we have HRT. A clear indication that what is perfectly fine in one country can have comedy implications in another.

    Maybe we could have Prodrive Motorsport Team joining in 2011 (PMT).

    Or Williams renaming as Williams Motorsport Division (WMDs).

    I still wont believe Bernie doesnt get his way until the first race on Stefan GP. I dont agree they should get a place, but usually what Bernie wants he gets.

  51. danish Hanif says:

    James !

    I have notied that drivers entry number 13 is missing from the list between Patrov and Sutil.

    any idea, why No:13 is missing.

    Cheers

  52. Paul Kelly says:

    Stefan sounded shady from day one in my opinion. Now reports the parent company misrepresented themselves to Toyota:

    http://www.motorsport.com/news/article.asp?ID=359291&FS=F1

  53. Dave says:

    Hi James,

    What do you make of reports coming from German media that Zoran Stefanovic is (in their words) a fraud?

    The article alleges that he exaggerated his credentials to fool Toyota and the FIA, and that he doesn’t really have the money or facilities that he’s claiming.

    The Google translation of the article is here:
    http://translate.google.com/translate?js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=1&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.express.de%2Fsport%2Fmotorsport%2Fbundeswehr-und-zwei-firmen-gehen-gegen-stefanovic-vor%2F-%2F3200%2F1198046%2F-%2Findex.html&sl=de&tl=en

  54. TM says:

    The FIA should surely use this website for recruitment. There are so many people here who knew that some of the new teams wouldn’t make it. Wow if only the FIA had had their insight.

  55. Sebee says:

    Ferrari as a car maker is boutique enough to have a full team, like Lotus, McLaren, Lambo, etc. The car makers I refer to are ones that sell more than 100k car units per year or more. Basically everyone we’ve lost. They should just do engines.

  56. Bluem says:

    I have to say I’m very dissapointed that USF1 failed, not that I’m a USF1 fan but I hoped that it would change the thinking and perception a bit just like Wirth is trying to do.

    My question to you however James, is this: Did USF1 fail because sponsors or promised funding didn’t materialze or did they underestimate the costs involved and then sponsors started withdrawing?

    Thanks, great blog.

    1. James Allen says:

      Sounds like sponsor funding fell through, but there may well be something more fundamentally wrong here – not sure yet as I haven’r had a chance to get to the bottom of it.

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