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It's official: F1 is broken. At least, with the FOTA's announcement it will create a rival championship, it appears that F1 as we have known it is all but broken. Max Mosley and the FIA have gone back and forth with the FOTA for months, with neither side able to agree on a compromise and both sides claiming the other party is being intransigent.

After meeting at Renault's Enstone, England headquarters the eight "rebel" teams (Ferrari, McLaren, Toyota, Renault, BMW, Brawn, Red Bull, Toro Rosso) decided there was no way to proceed with the FIA, so it would proceed without the FIA. The crucial bits of their follow-up press release state:
"The teams cannot continue to compromise on the fundamental values of the sport and have declined to alter their original conditional entries to the 2010 World Championship.

"These teams therefore have no alternative other than to commence the preparation for a new Championship which reflects the values of its participants and partners. This series will have transparent governance, one set of regulations, encourage more entrants and listen to the wishes of the fans, including offering lower prices for spectators worldwide, partners and other important stakeholders.

"The major drivers, stars, brands, sponsors, promoters and companies historically associated with the highest level of motorsport will all feature in this new series."

The release goes on to address issues the FOTA has with the "commercial rights holder," by which they mean Bernie Ecclestone. If they mean what they've written, a more stable and less expensive F1 would be a victory for teams and fans. Track owners would probably also profit, since they pay Ecclestone more than ten million pounds simply for the right to hold an F1 race -- and that's part of the money the teams want a bigger share of.

Many observers have said the teams won't set up another championship because they're too focused on selling cars. But the FOTA has already spoken to Carmelo Ezpeleta, whose Dorna Sports company is in charge of Moto GP, and who has experience in taking control of the series from the FIM. If he can provide a turn-key solution, the teams can stick to doing what they do best.

We suspect the FOTA is correct and that brands, sponsors and promoters will follow the breakaway series rather than hang back with Williams, Force India and eight other teams in the F1 reset series. The question is: if those eight teams follow through, and assuming they take their contracted drivers, which series will get your attention next year?

For now, though, bring on the lawyers. Thanks to all who tipped in.

[Source: Autosport]


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  • 85 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Big Yay!

      Enough with F1 - the current "formula" stifles creativity and technological advancement - a new paradigm could mean BIG advances in the racing state of the art and in the machines we drive.

      Hold tight guys, you're on the right track!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hopefully they will be able to keep most of the drama ON the track in this series!
      • 5 Years Ago
      So the $100,000 question is, that what does FOTA do about lacking F1's biggest asset, the Monaco GP? What can they do to compete? Perhaps Spa could be hyped? Or Silverstone? Or dare I hope, the Nordeschleife (not really safe for cars that quick anymore though)?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Did Monaco obligate somehow to host only FIA-promoted racing events?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Prince Albert has already stated that he sees little point to holding a Monaco Grand Prix without Ferrari. The promoter of Monaco has echoed his sentiments.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Interesting if Monaco would split from Bernie. Without it, Bernie is sunk.

        I think a race in other European cities would be amazing too. Much of the interesting parts of Paris are paved with cobblestones though, and that's not going to work for an F1 race. I also think keeping to the Mediterranean course is wise, it helps with the weather.
        • 5 Years Ago
        They staff it for 24h for the 24 hours of the N-ring, is F1 impossible?
        • 5 Years Ago
        The old Ring would be cool. The problem is not how fast the cars are, it is the fact that around 14 miles of track is too much to cover if a bad accident happens. In the past ,other drivers were often the first on the scene of bad accidents. It is a logistical nightmare to adequately staff a track of that size. The Ring is actually much safer than places like the Targa Florio or the Isle of Man TT course ( which is actually still used to this day for motorcycle racing ).
      • 5 Years Ago
      Oh i really wasen't expecting this. I thought they would just complain and that's it.
      Still great news! In your face Max Mosley! USA GP seems more than plausible now.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Tom Winch

        Where do you get your information? Working on what I have read (a not inconsiderable amount), I would have to label your comment as fabrication, misinformation at best. The average Formula one car has a gestation period of eighteen months, Brawn took fifteen. It follows that the development of the car fell inside both Honda ownership (around 11 months or so) and Brawn post MBO (4 months or thereabouts). It is logically unsound to suggest that in December 2008 the new management scrapped the existing design and started again. Changes were certainly made, perhaps even fundamental changes, but the double diffuser so central to their early pace, was an element included from the project's inception (Ross has said so himself).

        As an addendum to this, your assertation that Ross Brawn was "handed the car" fails to recognise the ongoing involvement Ross had had in the project. As team principal he was involved from the start, the changes were to the ownership and funding not necessarily his role within the team. My main bone of contention is with the following spurious statement "this year's car is all BRAWN GP", evidently this is not the case. The car was developed, for the most part, by utilising the facilities and expertise available to what was reportedly the best funded team in competition. That includes the use of a wind tunnel, advanced facilities at Brackley and most importantly a very large, capable staff. Many of these individuals (over a third) have been made redundant and it has been widely reported that Brawn have sufficient budget for development but no investment. The thrust of my argument is this, is it likely that that Brawn would have been so successful had Honda pulled out early? There is no doubting Ross' ability but funding is paramount and was the key factor here. Would you now consider adjusting your statement perhaps to "this years car was a little bit BRAWN GP, but mostly it's a Honda"?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Well, BRAWN GP is honda, he cars were fully deveoped by honda and so forth, It was only handed to Brawn like a week before the season premiere :P
        • 5 Years Ago
        @MixiM - That's not true. When Brawn took over last year, he was handed the car that was developed by Honda and did his best to make it work. This year's car was his baby, his design and development all the way. Granted, he did start on this year's car early last year when the team was still Honda, but make no mistake, this year's car is all BRAWN GP.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Brawn GP isn't running in a series controlled by the manufacturers.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I hope USGP goes with FOTA
        • 5 Years Ago
        USGP, as well as all these other teams you heard rumors of were all lined up by Bernie in case the big manufacturers dropped out. And now they will take their places in the new low-cost F1.

        You didn't really think USGP would try to compete in a series run by manufacturers, do you? This series will be very difficult for privateers.
      sbuonicon
      • 5 Years Ago
      FINALLY NOW CAN THE FERRAI WINNNNNN AGAIN !!!!!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Well done Mad Max, this is what u wanted. I can't wait for this Breakaway Series to get going. We need to see the Manufacturers push each other in the cutting edge of Motorsport. So long Max the Dictator. The FIA panicked because of the Global Financial Crisis and began demanding instead of proposing rule changes. I will watch the new series instead of the new so called F1. I want to see a BMW V10 rev pass 19,000rpm again. I want to see the fastest race ever run recorded again. I want a Ferrari & a Mercedes Fighting for Supremacy at the Highest level of racing with the best drivers at the wheels. Let's get back to being the Pinnacle of Motorsport. Goodbye Max & Bernie should be able to pay off those creditors with the Billions he made off this sport. A new day is here......... I Welcome it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hmm, how can they possibly organise a new series in less than a year? Signing up tracks, agree on rules, advertisement, tv rights, etc. These things are agreed years in advance and the economic climate doesn't favour big adventures. There are few tracks that are safe enough for F1-type of cars.

      That said, I would love a more down to earth championship that's about racing the fastest cars on the planet, and that is global, preferably on some historical tracks.
        • 5 Years Ago
        the logistics you mention are where Carmelo Ezpeleta comes in. His experience in MotoGP would be crucial to securing vendors, signing tracks, enticing sponsors, drafting rules, etc. It'll certainly be an arduous task, but not impossible. Considering all the high profile teams are in this new group, it shouldn't be too hard to secure the sponsors and tracks.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wonder what that means for the passionate fans of F1 whose teams are part of the split… Will they choose between going to one over the other? I would like to goto both races, but no doubt, one will shine as a favorite, and I have a feeling, where the big teams go, so will the fans…You could say, without an audience, there is no point!
      • 5 Years Ago
      I hope the same happens with the WRC, regulations are limiting engineering and development in the teams.
      • 5 Years Ago
      this is great news,i hope they get the teams to go with them next year that were going to F1 like the american team.
        • 5 Years Ago
        also hope they come to america and canada again.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I, for one, welcome our new open-wheel racing overlords. Hopefully Montreal and Indy will be rolling out the welcome wagon.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I love it when people fed up with nonsense organizations secede, makes me feel great...
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