Daily Archives: December 10, 2009

F1 teams planning joint launch in January

Circuit Ricardo Tormo (Valencia)

Circuit Ricardo Tormo (Valencia)

It has been revealed that all Formula 1 teams, in a meeting of all team principals, have agreed to launch their 2010 cars in one large event, in Valencia. This will be in late January, to coincide with the first F1 testing of 2010 a few days later, again in Valencia.

Mercedes Benz GP CEO nick Fry said: “I don’t want to go into too much detail about what the plans actually are, but we have agreed between all the teams to do a joint launch and we do wish to turn it into a proper event.”

“We are getting a lot of help from the venue and investment in communication and marketing to do that. I think I am going from here to a meeting this afternoon to discuss the subject.

“I wouldn’t wish to spill the beans on what we are going to do, but it is going to be hugely innovative. It is going to be a clear demonstration of how we are going to be working together. We are not all going off and doing our own individual launches, so we can do something that is a lot more customer friendly.”

The team boss of Lotus, Tony Fernandes, said that it may be too early for their car to  be ready. However, if this is the case, Fernandes and Lotus may still attend, even if it means bringing “matchbox car”.

Martin Whitmarsh to become new FOTA chairman

Martin Whitmarsh, team principal of McLaren Mercedes

Martin Whitmarsh, team principal of McLaren Mercedes

McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh has been voted in to succeed Luca di Montezemolo as the chairman of the Formula 1 Teams Association.

After a meeting of the F1 Commission (see article on new points system) in Monaco today, the team principals then met to discuss plans for next year. This included the positions of senior officials.

Whitmarsh will take over from Luca di Montezemelo later this month. Also, Christian Horner has been made chairman of the FOTA Sporting Working Group. Ross Brawn will remain head of the Technical Working Group.

Also, in this meeting, an agreement was reached as to the launching of the teams’ new cars in January. Details of this will be in my next article, which will be published tonight.

New points system expected for 2010

FIA Flag

FIA Flag

The points system for Formula 1 is set to change, as the FIA World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) seeks to give points to the top ten finishers in the race.

In a meeting of the F1 Commission, chaired by Bernie Ecclestone and FIA president JeanTodt, a new points scoring system was put forward, which was mainly influenced by the fact that there would be a 26-car grid next year.

Under this points system, first place would get 25 points, second would get 20 and third would get 15. The next 7 finishers would score 10, 8, 6, 5, 3, 2 and 1 point respectively.This amendment will be submitted by the F1 Commission to the WMSC tomorrow, and a decision will be made on the day.

The F1 Commission is made up of key championship stakeholders from F1 teams, promoters, suppliers and sponsors. Their next meeting will be on the 10th March in Bahrain, a few days before the Grand Prix.

In the same meeting, the Commission agreed to change the name of Brawn to Mercedes. Also, the Commission stated that: “The team will continue to receive payments based on its historical performance. This has been granted on a one-off exceptional basis due to Mercedes-Benz’s long-term involvement and commitment to Formula One.”

An opinion article on this will be written soon, after the decision tomorrow.