Posted on July 12, 2009


If Silverstone weekend was all theatre and drama, regarding the rebel teams battle with the FIA, this weekend has been much calmer and more subdued. Possibly because of the cold, wet weather. But behind the scenes in the warm and dry motorhomes there has been a great deal of activity. Yesterday I heard that the eight FOTA teams had aligned themselves with CVC, the money men behind F1 and that the position now is that if they cannot find the agreement needed with the FIA  to get the new Concorde Agreement signed this week, then they will breakaway. FOTA had More…

Posted on July 9, 2009


Last night it looked as though World War Three had broken out again between the F1 teams and the governing body, but having got to the Nurburgring and heard both sides, it seems to me that, bizarrely, a lasting solution is close. Despite the fire and brimstone of various statements over the last 48 hours, in fact the two sides are close to signing a new Concorde Agreement which would return stability to the sport. This document would also be signed by venture capital firm CVC, who are majority shareholders in the commercial rights holder, with Bernie Ecclestone. CVC and More…

Posted on June 24, 2009


Speaking to the Italian media after today’s breakthrough agreement, FOTA and Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo took quite a strong line on the man sitting on the opposite side of the negotiating table from him these last few months, “The satisfaction is that all of our requests have been accepted, ” said Montezemolo. “To us three things were most important; that F1 stay F1 and not become F3, that there is no dictator, but that there was a choice of rules, agreed and not imposed; and that whoever had a team was consulted and had a voice. Mosley has announced More…

Posted on June 24, 2009


The FIA has issued the entry list for next season’s F1 world championship and it features all of the existing teams and the three new ones who entered last week. Meanwhile more details of the deal which saved F1, brokered by Luca di Montezemolo, Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone, are staring to emerge. The crucial points are that the rules for next year will be the same as 2009, costs will be brought right down, but there will be no budget cap and the teams and manufacturers have committed to the sport until at least 2012. The FIA emerges from More…

Posted on June 24, 2009


Formula 1 looked into the abyss, didn’t like what it saw and has has stepped away from the brink today as a deal has been struck for the FOTA teams to commit to race in F1, ending the threat of a breakaway. The commitment from the manufacturers and teams appears to be only until 2012, not it would appear the 2014 commitment that Bernie Ecclestone and Max Mosley were looking for from the manufacturers. Details are still to emerge of the deal and what is entailed, but early indications are that Mosley has agreed not to stand again for office More…

Posted on June 24, 2009


The world motor sport council meeting is underway in Paris, where the FIA president Max Mosley will defend his handling of the crisis over 2010 entries and FOTA president Luca di Montezemolo will present FOTA’s case for why the FIA needs to accept the conditions the teams have placed on their entries. There were eight world council members at Silverstone on Sunday, the FIA’s David Ward was taking them round and they are reported to have been unimpressed with what they see as FOTA, backed by the manufacturers, attempting to muscle the FIA out of the picture. Max Mosley emphasised More…

Posted on June 23, 2009


Things in the F1 breakaway world are intensifying as we count down to yet another potentially decisive moment, the FIA world motor sport council meeting tomorrow morning in Paris. Against a backdrop of eight of the current F1 teams wishing to break away and signs of a lack on confidence from some of the proposed new teams, everyone is waiting to see whether there will be some kind of attempt to oust FIA president Max Mosley, or indeed any kind of attempt by the WMSC to get the FOTA teams to re-engage. If nothing is forthcoming then FOTA’s preparations for More…

Posted on June 22, 2009


The noises coming out of the FOTA teams on Sunday evening were quite resolute. They are not swayed by the latest suggestions from Max Mosley of fresh dialogue and are pressing ahead with preparations for a breakaway series. Currently Flavio Briatore is making the running on this, given his strong reputation as a wheeler dealer, he is being positioned as the ‘new Bernie’ in the FOTA set up. He has been in touch with several recent F1 circuits, sounding them out, preparing the ground. Several circuits are under the control of the teams anyway, like Fuji (Toyota) and Mugello (Ferrari). More…

Posted on June 21, 2009


FIA president Max Mosley said today that he was ready to start negotiations with FOTA to try to get F1 back on track after the teams opted to start a breakaway series. “We are talking to people all the time,” he told BBC’s F1 programme. “It will all be back to normal, it’s just a question of when. We are very close. What divides us and the teams is minimal and really is something we could sit down and iron out very quickly.” Mosley was very active with the media in the run up to the race. He was clarifying More…

Posted on June 21, 2009


There is a fantastic atmosphere here at Silverstone today, with over 100,000 people looking forward to a great day’s racing. We had 85,000 here on Friday, which is more than most Grands Prix get on raceday. Bernie Ecclestone’s comments yesterday that we will be back at Silverstone next year if Donington isn’t ready have been well received by the F1 fraternity and the public and it has given some reassurance in a weekend of instability. The weather is not as warm as predicted, it’s currently only 15 degrees, which is not going to help Jenson Button very much. He needs More…

Posted on June 19, 2009


The row between the FIA and FOTA entered a new phase this afternoon as the FIA put out a statement saying that they were preparing legal action, “The FIA’s lawyers have now examined the FOTA threat to begin a breakaway series. The actions of FOTA as a whole, and Ferrari in particular, amount to serious violations of law including wilful interference with contractual relations, direct breaches of Ferrari’s legal obligations and a grave violation of competition law. The FIA will be issuing legal proceedings without delay. “Preparations for the 2010 FIA Formula One World Championship continue but publication of the More…

Posted on June 19, 2009


There is a lot of activity going on at Silverstone, following the announcement by FOTA that they are commencing preparations for a breakaway series. No-one on the FOTA side is saying how much preparation has already been done, but I gather that one of the team principals has been on the phone to several tracks which have recently hosted F1 events and are no longer hosting events, like Indianapolis, Montreal, Silverstone. Ferrari owns Mugello, while Imola is ready to host these cars again after a major refurbishment. The teams seem to feel that the logistics of putting a new series More…

Posted on June 19, 2009


Max Mosley arrived in the Silverstone paddock midway through this morning’s free practice session and went straight into Bernie Ecclestone’s motor home. The announcement by FOTA of a breakaway series is no surprise to him, indeed he will have been expecting this. He has a huge appetite for this fight and he knows what a huge undertaking it would be to start a new racing series. The FIA put out a brief reaction earlier today as follows: “The FIA is disappointed but not surprised by FOTA’s inability to reach a compromise in the best interests of the sport. It is More…

Posted on June 19, 2009


“If you are going to bark, you need to be prepared to bite.” This is what a member of one of the FOTA teams said to me yesterday afternoon, with respect to the threat of leaving Formula 1 and forming a breakaway series. Shortly after midnight FOTA made the announcement that many had feared was coming and which takes the sport into unchartered waters. The teams met at the Renault HQ near Oxford prior to making their announcement. They will have done so with a heavy heart but had to do it, really. It was put up or shut up More…

Posted on June 12, 2009


It’s been an intense day of statements and announcements. In all cases reading between the lines has been necessary. After the FIA’s announcement of the entries for 2010 this morning came Ferrari’s swift, calm but strong reaction, then FOTA’s threat to issue a dossier listing all the things that are wrong with the way F1 is run. FOTA sources refuse to say on what day this dossier will be issued. The day ended with the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) suggesting, again between the lines, that not only would it apply pressure on the FIA to look at the conduct More…



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