Tag Archives: F1 2014

F1 to delay new engine rules until 2014

Formula 1 looks set to delay new engine formula

Formula 1 looks set to delay a new engine formula

Formula 1 chiefs have today agreed to postpone the introduction of new engine regulations, which were due to be enforced in 2013.

The original plan was to use 1.6 litre 4-cylinder engines, with turbochargers and various energy recovery units featuring. However, after mixed opinions from engine manufacturers, the FIA has agreed to change the new regulations, and delay them for a further year.

The new plan is to use 1.6 litre V6 engines, but still retaining the “green” technology that the FIA has been keen to introduce. Turbochargers are expected to remain as well.

While this change will not be enforced for some time, it has already been approved by the F1 Commission, which is made up of the teams and other of the sport’s representatives. The regulation change will now go to a vote at the World Motor Sport Council.

Mercedes and Cosworth were concerned about the cost of developing new engines, while Ferrari disagreed with the proposal of 4-cylinder engines. Only Renault was in favour of the original plan, however they have since agreed to the new engine formula.

Russian Grand Prix confirmed at Sochi for 2014

It has been announced today by Bernie Ecclestone and Vladimir Putin that the Russian Grand Prix has been confirmed to take a place on the Formula 1 calendar, from 2014 onwards. The race will take part at a circuit in Sochi, which has yet to be built. This city also happens to be the host of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The track will be designed by Herman Tilke, at a cost of $200m, and Bernie Ecclestone is charging $40m to host the race. However, it cannot be confirmed at this time if that payment will be the same each year.

Vladimir Putin confirmed the deal today to Reuters, saying: “We have reached an agreement with the principal owner of Formula One that Sochi would host the Russian Grand Prix from 2014 to 2020.”

With this, the Indian GP next year, US GP in 2013, and the Rome GP to be announced whenever the deal is signed, this could mean that the Formula 1 calendar could be extended to up to 23 races by 2014.

Russia has become heavily involved in Formula 1 this year, with most of the credit going to Vitaly Petrov. New sponsors such as Vyborg Shipyard (which just so happens to be Petrov’s home town), Flagman, and Lada have been brought on board at Renault, which owns 25% of AvtoVAZ, the parent company of Lada. This huge commercial interest sparked rumours several months ago about a race in Russia, and Bernie Ecclestone has not made it a secret that he wanted a race there.

As always, I look forward to new races, but with Herman Tilke on board you can never be sure what you end up with. I was hoping that the track would be made by Populous, the company that worked on the Silverstone redevelopments (and are working on the Sochi Winter Olympics sites very close to the proposed track), but unfortunately this has not happened.

The main concern would be about the fact that several races now must be dropped, as the F1 calendar surely couldn’t stand 23 races per year. Personally, I think Catalunya, Valencia, Hungary, Germany and Bahrain could be dropped, but we will have to wait and see over the next few years.

Mallorca circuit bidding for F1 race

Recently, the future of the European Grand Prix has been in doubt, as the organisers of the Valencia circuit have been struggling to pay the contract. Because of this doubt over the long-term future of this event, representatives of a planned circuit in the Spanish Balearic island of Mallorca have met with Bernie Ecclestone to try and snatch the F1 rights off Valencia as early as 2013.

The first draft for the proposition for a circuit in Mallorca

The first draft for the proposition for a circuit in Mallorca

The circuit is in its early design stage, although Spanish architects Mateo Palmer and Biel Arbona are already working on the track layout. Federico Gastaldi, one of the men who brought Argentina back on the F1 calendar years ago, is currently in discussions with Bernie Ecclestone over this plan. Joan Jaume Mule, the the mayor of the Llucmajor municipality of the Balearic Islands, has already thrown his support behind the project also.

Valencia has a contract to hold F1 races until and including 2014, but rumours a few months ago speculated that the circuit orgainisers were struggling to keep up payments to Bernie. If this is the case, then the Mallorca circuit may be allowed to enter negotiations.

Mallorca itself is completely centered around tourism, seeing as half the population work in the tourist industry. Economically, the island could be capable of hosting an F1 race, but it’s the track itself that worries me. While it is only the first proposition, it appears to be a mess of heavy left and right-handers. This 3.6 mile track has no exciting corners, and only has 1 realistic overtaking opportunity. More though is required if these designers even want to start to think about a proposition to host an F1 race.

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