USF1: A new team on the block

usf1-logoTeam Name: Looks like USF1 is the chosen name so far

Owners: Peter Windsor, Ken Anderson

Sponsors: Windsor’s team blog confirms that one of their initial investors are the advertising agency of Goodby, Silverstein & Partners.

Drivers: None confirmed but rumour mills are highlighting on Jonathon Summerton, Danica Patrick, Scott Speed, Kyle Busch, Marco Andretti.

Expected entry: 2010

USP: US based – Charlotte, N. Carolina, fans can visit the Factory and see the car being designed and they can interact with the team, intend to have American drivers.

“And, above all, give us your thoughts and ideas as the team begins to grow: because USF1 is for all of you out there who love F1, who love the idea of proving that American racing technology is on par to compete at the highest levels of the sport globally. And it is for those of you who, like us, just have a yearning to pit one human being against another in exotic pieces of machinery.”

Idea to be US-based:

“Most of the technology from F1 comes from the US to begin with, and on the logistics side, next year less than half the races take place on the (European) continent so there is less reason for being there,” he said. “The cost of doing business in the US is significantly cheaper than Europe and there are a lot of good people here.”

Launch vid

A bit dull week of Formula 1

A lot is not happening in F1 world this week except for same old speculation about future of Honda Racing, USF1, Mosley & driver superlicense rates and F1fanatic not working.

756062833_bf3a272a7dMeanwhile teams are busy with testing at Jerez and Bahrain. While Europe was experiencing bad weather Bahrain too was having sandstorms making it very difficult for teams to test.

Not much information can be gathered by the times of various set-ups right now. The teams are still using different combinations of wings as the drivers get used to running with the new slick tyres.

New Red Bull RB5

redbullrb5_2009f1car-21

Red Bull Racing have unveiled latest challenger for 2009 season, RB5.  The team have new hopes of winning the races with the talent of young Sebastian Vettel and experience of Mark Webber (who’s is recuperating his injury) and the power of Renault engine which are due a power-lift after the new regulations. The car is designed by Adrian Newey.

“2009 will also see us benefit from greater stability in terms of how we run the operation, with all our key players in the technical group having been with us for at least two years,” said Christian Horner. “We should not forget they designed a car that won a grand prix in 2008, in the hands of Sebastian Vettel and Scuderia Toro Rosso.

As RB5 is coming a long time after its major competitors it looks more complete,Technical Analysis (Autosport).

Gallery

Sebastian Vettel explains the new Red Bull RB5

Video gallery

Who wants a car?: Car sales further tumble!

car_manufacturingThe recession is hurting the car sales deeply. We thought the last data was worst but the recent data is more bad!

Deliveries at VW, Europe’s biggest carmaker, dropped about 20 %, compared with 2.9 % in December, while BMW had a 24 % decline and similarly Mercedes suffered a fall of 31 %.

Meanwhile Toyota says the forecast for its operating loss might be 3 times its previous estimate. The company expects a full-year net loss of 350 billion yen. This will be first loss making year in the history of Toyota.

“I’m expecting a big loss for next year, too.” said Takashi Aoki

The car industry’s sales have dropped to its lowest since the early 1980s. Famed companies like GM and Chrysler are working to avert bankruptcy with $17.4 billion in bail-out loans and face a Feb. 17 deadline to prove they’re viable.

Meanwhile, FIA continue to work towards bringing the costs of running a F1 team down. The aim is to reduce spending to around $65m a year.

The intention is to achieve this by carefully going through every aspect of the Formula 1 cars and examining which parts should be performance-related and which can be standardised with no harm being done to the spectacle of the sport.

This will be intended to give GP2 teams opportunity to jump to F1. FOTA is already working towards making some good changes to the sport along with FIA as the feeling is very clear among teams that the sport needs a balance between spectacle and cost to survive.

FOTA love-in: How much?

There is a lot of talk over how much love-in of FOTA is going to last. I would like to see this in the wake of ever increasing ties between McLaren and Ferrari.  A little than a year ago the two teams weren’t looking each other in the eye and now!  One of the reasons of this change in relationship is because of the formation of Formula One Teams’ Association. A very strong reason is that both teams want to get a better deal on the money from Bernie Ecclestone.

FOTA: Killing the monopoly of Mosley and Ecclestone?

FOTA is looking for the betterment of F1 in their own way rather then working under the directions of Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone. The combined influence of Mosley and Ecclestone have severely damaged F1 in the past. But with the Honda’s exit the reality is in the face of the manufacturers. They simply now beleive that for their survival and the motorsport they have to stay united together.  FOTA proposed most of the rules now in practice for this year and beyond. Example of the influence FOTA is putting on the sport comes from their confirmation that each manufacturer is willing to supply customer engines for 5 million Euros per season and gearboxes for 1.5 million Euros to make it more feasible than it has been for years for an independent team to enter F1. Also teams want to decide the rules of F1 based on market research!

These are all positive sides of the groups strength. FOTA recently also opened an office in London. This shows the sign of a long lasting unity. FOTA for me will not fall apart. They will be very aware of the power that they can wield as a united force.

The big 2: McLaren and Ferrari

Ferrari and McLaren are two of the biggest teams in F1. Its is unfathomable to think F1 with them. Many argue that all the current F1 teams are in the sport to try and win. Presumably when they meet each team has an agenda based in it’s individual strengths and how they can best direct the rules to their advantage. Such demands can result in this whole thing falling apart if Ferrari and McLaren want certain things.

For example, the ban in in-season testing is to the detriment of the smaller teams who do not have the same quality of wind tunnels, CFD and simulation systems and who have relied, to an extent, on putting the part onto the car and watching the lap times.

Also, a few difference started to surface like Flavio Briatore assault on BMW not joining in the call to suspend the intro of KERS.

Bernie Ecclestone

He has already started with his efforts to break FOTA as he knows the strength of teams unity might put a hole in his pocket. He already admitted publically that he pays Ferrari more than any other team to keep them cosy. But this hasn’t worked as everyone already new the fact.

He might offer Ferrari some more to break them from FOTA. Can this be his next step?

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