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New teams latest: Campos changes name, Stefan GP agitating
New teams latest: Campos changes name, Stefan GP agitating
Posted By: James Allen  |  02 Mar 2010   |  7:57 pm GMT  |  218 comments

There is plenty of movement going on behind the scenes this week among the new teams and aspirant teams with the new season starting next week.

Campos is undergoing a name change today and this will be made public shortly. Sections of the Spanish media have suggested that it will be called “Hispania Racing”, in line with the new majority owner Jose Ramon Carabante’s business enterprises.

Kolles: Turning Campos German

However it is clear that this team is becoming increasingly German since former Force India team principal Colin Kolles took the reins. The team is set to run out of the former Opel DTM factory in Germany and there is German money being pumped into the team to get it functioning. It is a race against time.

The team will use the Dallara chassis designed and built for Campos and the Cosworth engines they have already paid for.

Adrian Campos is no longer involved; he was apparently offered an honorary position in the team, but turned it down.

Spanish sources say that Carabante has put €12 million into the team already and following a meeting with Bernie Ecclestone last week was encouraged to invest a further €12 million. Ecclestone has apparently assured him that he will get his investment back. It appears that he may be a saviour/broker figure rather than a long term investor, but time will tell.

There have been a lot of rumours that Volkswagen is in the background of this deal, but there are several problems with this theory. The first is that if VW/Audi group were to come into F1, they would probably start with Red Bull Racing as the energy drinks company has poured many millions of Euros into VW/Audi motorsport programmes over recent years in an attempt to get them to come in. And they are at the cutting edge of F1 design technology. Although Kolles is well connected in Germany and the factory will be based there, there are other teams with a better claim on VW/Audi’s attention at this stage than a team which is using a customer car and is starting from scratch.

The other problem is that there is no point in a manufacturer coming into F1 before 2013 as the engine formula will change totally then, so an investment in a 2.4 litre V8 for only a year or two of racing doesn’t make sense. It works for Cosworth because they had an existing engine they could easily adapt.

The rules for the 2013 engine will probably be specified later this year by the FIA and are likely to be very green and futuristic. Max Mosely wanted the formula to be based on fuel use rather than CCs. Jean Todt has indicated that he wants it to be road relevant. Either way it is likely to be a 1.5 litre four cylinder turbo or something of that kind with a big 120 KW electric hybrid motor, harvesting energy under braking.

The FIA will be sounding out manufacturers and potential manufacturers to see what engine would work best and once the new rules are specified, it is possible to imagine one or two manufacturers coming in if the engine is relavant to the motor industry of the future.

Ferrari launched its first hybrid car today, with a KERS system derived from the F1 programme, so this is clearly the direction of travel.

Meanwhile word is spreading from the USA that the staff at USF1 have been told today that the operation is closing down and the dream is over. Eddie Jordan has stuck his neck out again and said that Stefan will be on the grid in Bahrain, with Jacques Villeneuve in the car. He is acting on an inside tip off and this could be a smokescreen, a bit of tree shaking, but with USF1 collapsing and its driver Jose Maria Lopez in discussions with Campos, it looks like Stefan is making a mighty final push to get on the grid next week. The team has not managed to test yet because of a lack of tyres, but has the Toyota chassis designed for this year and a supply of its engines.

Incidentally the information that former McLaren sporting director Dave Ryan is with Stefan GP is incorrect. There were discussions but Ryan did not join the team. However former McLaren designer Mike Coughlan is there. Also negotiating with Stefan is USF1 investor and You Tube founder, Chad Hurley.

It has been suggested that Bruno Senna is required to come up with some money to secure the Campos seat he signed for some months ago and that Karun Chandhok is being lined up for the second seat.

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all academic now, no new teams allowed take USf1’s place in 2010 season…thankfully.


Well, it seems that Stefan GP will definitely not be allocated the vacant grid slot, as revealed today by the French newspapers “Le Parisien”.

Jonathan De Andrade

Out of topic but it worth watch:

McLaren spies Ferrari again!


this is so funny! Id never thought of this happening like this … they act like kids bullying each other!! is it common in the paddock?


I think the ferrari guys should have told those McLaren punters to piss off.


Why? From what I saw they were doing nothing wrong and I am sure Ferrari will be looking at the McLaren so what’s the problem?


James, this comment is not meant for posting, just to make you aware of this interesting article about the teams that were and weren’t chosen:

I’m not sure how much of it is technically accurate, but I’m sure you do.


As I’ve said before they should do just as the author of that piece says: let anyone try to qualify that turns up and passes inspection.


How the hell did Prodrive not get a slot…..would have been great to see Aston Martin on the grid……


Max Mosley!


Future engines could include both 5 cylinder, which was the smoothest ever, (Audi I think) and Wankel rotary engines.

You really need generators on all four wheels or at least two front and the crankshaft, in order to salvage power under braking: the braking effort has to be transferred from brake disk/pad friction into the shunting effect on the generator. As I have mentioned before, the major problems will become heat produced by losses in the power transfer cables. Supercooling of conductors would be a great advantage.

Also let’s not forget the Williams and Toyota flywheel KERS system. FLywheels have been used for many years on commercial vehicles, however for F1 speeds the safety problems of a flywheel are similar to that of a wheel braking free, only much, very much, worse. It is also possible that precession would be a problem unless equalised (Step forward Erick Laithwite, one of our greatest scientists and inventor of the linear motor, who was later ridiculed by his contemporaries for his work on gyroscopes, which still one day, may be proven)

However for things to really advance, we need free movable flaps front and rear, and maybe a total aero plan surface area restriction, but allow smart surfaces.


Just give em the tyres to test with???Then you have another team – I hope VW / Audi set up comes in – shown you can win Le Mans with a diesel. The new green and green coloured Ferrari shows what KERS was meant for to help planet earth and lower your petrol price at the pump…


Porsche might make a good F1 team. The hybrid motor philosophy would tie in well with their 318 cicely car (3.4L V8 hybrid)


I think its really telling that arguably the most successful racing marque ever – Porsche – avoids F1.


my opinion is that there should be only three engine regulations, a maximum spend on engines per team, a maximum fuel tank size which can be adjusted season by season and a maximum amount of engines per season. That way manufacturors can be as innovative as they like and can experiment with all sorts of different layouts; V10’s, F6’s, turbochargers, hybrid power etc.


From a reliable source i am hearing there is NO WAY Stephan GP gets a spot on the grid.


Autosport just confirmed that Stefan GP are not on this year’s entry list. Good, I was not in favour of Stefan GP being given a spot. There was a bit of the fly-by-night about Mr. Stefanovich and I think there could have been as much of a circus around him just as much as if USF1 had made it…


…from my reliable source…..

“I am assured by an FIA person that Stefan won’t get an entry due to a combination of Coughlan, Stefanovic’s personal background, the fact that he dragged the FIA before the European Commission over the format of the new team selection process, the team did not file an entry under it’s proper name, fear of litigation by the other teams who were declined entry, possibly the fact that Stefan doesn’t own anything (Toyota has been paid nothing for any of it’s equipment, staff or factory space) and perhaps the fact that Stefanovic is allied with Bernie Ecclestone, who is not very popualr around the Pairs offices these days. “


I’m glad that Campos/Hispania is going to hopefully make the grid. The more the better. I hope Stefan can make it as well. It’s sad to see USF1 fail, but I am not surprised. Bernie had it right all along with Campos and USF1.


I think limiting the fuel the teams can run over a race would be a good idea. Open up the regulations to allow for different engine/motor configurations as long as the fuel is limited. This would open up for some innovation.


I think it reflects badly on F1 that Senna is scrapping around for a seat in a third tier car.

Someone like Williams should have given him a chance.


If he’d been quicker than Hulkenburg or better than Rubens they would have wouldn’t they?


While I am in favour of smaller turdo/hybrid engines that relate to production vehicles. I had a horrible vision in the future where I’d go to see a race and the engines have lost all of their stomach churning sound.

To me the sound of an f1 engine in the flesh is what in part makes the sport so exciting.

Heaven forbid we see in the furture hybrid cars with speakers attached to sound like V10’s!


I find both Campos and USF1 a general embarrasment to Formula 1. Especially Ken Anderson, such high dreams now nothing… Its pathetic, nothing but a day dreamer without a business head..

Christopher Martin

Stupid Turbos! =(

Bring back the banshee wail of those awesome V10’s!!!

I thought they were supposed to be improving the spectacle for us fans, not turning the sport into a showcase of green technology. >:(


I’m loosing patience with the Campos/US F1/Stefan farce.

Campos are just about going to make it to Bahrain and limp onto the back of the grid after failing and having to be brought out.

Just because Stefan have the Toyota cars and seem to be in a position to race doesnt mean that they have a right to race ahead of Prodrive, Lola etc as they were not in the hunt for a 2010 slot in the frst place.

And i am most dissapointed with US F1. I thought that these guys could have been the fastest out of the newbies. Ken and co have really messed things up and the US public (If they care) will be laughing at there efforts. The US is where the should be F1 expansion and not neccessarily the middle east.

F1 without a US race and now a US team, IMO, means F1 is still not complete. There should be at least one race in the US and i’d seen the US F1 team as a big factor to getting a US race back on the calender in the future.

Just cant wait for this to end and the racing to start!!


The championship should go with the teams that have an entry, the eleven that have tested during pre-season and Campos if they show up with a racing car at Bahrein.

USF1 will not be there so there entry should be cancelled and there entry should be given to others interested in racing in F1 but only in 2011.

Why such a rush to include Stefan GP at last minute? There´s no problem on having only 12 teams.


James, what is your gut feeling about Stefan GP? Do you think they’ll be on the grid in little over a week, or in 2010 at all?


Having read every comments here and re the engines I think we need to think out of the box and set the engineers free to show us why they are the best and what they can do.

The FIA should simply set an annual fuel allowance which would include all testing and races and let the teams use this fuel as they see fit and design whatever engine they see fit.

If the FIA did this we would see many different routes engineers took in trying to gain an edge and the innovation we’d see would lead us to many benefits for us all when this as yet unknown technology filters down to normal car drivers.

It would make for a fascinating season as innovations came on stream with some teams testing and others not with some getting low on the allocation as the season progressed.

To ensure no team ran out of fuel the FIA would need a penalty system so severe that no team would consider allowing themselves to run out of fuel.

Should the FIA have the warped view that their role is to make F1 greener (F1 being green, somebody’s having a laugh, F1 can never be green and just turning the lights out at Singapore would probably save more greenhouse gases than anything the teams d with their engines) all they would need to do is lower the annual fuel allowance year on year.

I say set the engineers free, we’ll all benefit, every one of us.

Rons best mate!

VW have long wanted to get in to f1 but there hasnt been the right time or team. red bull would be a good fit, and the vw logo on their stand has been there a long time!!

Quite wisely vw didnt do a jagf1, ie spend a whole lot on a minor manufacturer with a big old name!

Having said all this, i reckon there is no better team to get into f1 with than the mighty mclaren!! with mb pulling out of the best team in f1, there is a gaping hole for a new manufacturer.The guy who mentioned Hyudai earlier is bang on the money, they have wanted in and Dave Richards was rumoured to have them in his pocket a few years ago.

About 3 or 4 years ago I would have tipped DR to buy into Williams and have a Willams Hyundai, theres no doubt DR knows his stuff and was stitched up at BAR. And lets be honest what “proper” f1 fan would not want to see the revival of the biggest name in F1 – Sir Frank – take a bow and tie up the DR – it just makes sense…. I love my wife, my kids and Ron and Frank!!

What do you reckon James, how likely is DR to return, or someone to shake up Williams to revive the good ol days?


Williams without Sir Frank is like Tyrell without Ken. Just won’t be right. DR had his chance as a team principle and didn’t really set the pit-lane on fire. If he comes back it should be with his own team, not jumping into one, so he can prove Prodrive can do more than rally and road.

Stay where you are Frank…. plan for succession by all means, but keep those plans firmly in the future.


Hallo james. I’ve been following your blog for months and I have to say it is the best out there! Keep up your good work.

“so an investment in a 2.5 litre V8 for only a year or two of racing doesn’t make sense” That 2.5 litre…Typo? We’re currently racing with 2.4L V8 as far as I know..

Alistair Blevins

What should Bruno Senna do now?

Does he stick with Campos/Hispania/Whatever and risk an embarrassing and lacklustre season in (what I’m certain will be) uncompetitive machinery or jump ship and take an F1 sabbatical?

I’m sure there will be a force majeure in his contract that will allow him an out given that the team ownership has changed in the past few days, AND the fact that he’s not being asked to bring more money.

Tough one for a newbie. He needs to be certain his talent can outshine his car – like Alonso did back in 2001.


When you put it like that it makes perfect sense.

Next thought is WHY OH WHY does JV want to come back to F1 in this situation??

People are questioning MS coming back and wether it will risk his reputation, it will be nothing compared to what will happen with JV.

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