Tag Archives: FOM

F1 converts to HD television coverage

It has been confirmed by Bernie Ecclestone’s Formula One Management (FOM) that the sport will be broadcast in full High Definition (HD) television coverage from the 2011 season onwards, therefore ending months of speculation over whether the innovation would be introduced this year.

From Bahrain in mid-March to Brazil on the final weekend of November, the entire campaign will be brought to our screens in HD, with the international world feed now being provided at a data rate of 42 megabits per second and in MPEG-2 format.

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Texas signs 10-year deal for US Grand Prix

The American Grand Prix will be returning to the calendar in 2012 as Austin, Texas hosts what is set to be the country’s first race since 2007. The confirmation comes following much speculation regarding a Grand Prix in the country, with races in New York and its surrounding area having been the main topics.

After plans for a New Jersey street circuit were scrapped just a day after they were revealed, the Upper State New York Monticello circuit put forward a proposal last week although it has now been confirmed that a deal has been signed between Texas and sporting commercial rights holder Formula One Management (FOM).

The contract for Austin – nicknamed ’Silicon Hills’ due to being one of the most prominent regions in the USA for the technology industry – to serve as host city to the event will begin in 2012 and run through to 2021, with the race taking place at a purpose-built venue.

"We are extremely honoured and proud to reach an agreement with the F1 commercial rights holder," said Tavo Hellmund, Managing Partner of race promoter Full Throttle Productions, after confirming the deal with FOM head Bernie Ecclestone.

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FOTA announces breakaway series

Eight current teams have released a statement revealing that they are to leave Formula 1 at the end of this season. Members of the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) sent out the message following a meeting on Thursday, stating that all current teams apart from Williams and Force India will leave F1 at the end of 2009.

With FOTA having been involved in a dispute with F1 governing body the FIA since the latter announced a €45m budget cap for next season, FIA president Max Mosley released one final proposal on Wednesday which described how, although a budget cap would remain, he was fully prepared to reach a compromise with FOTA. On top of this, the FIA also released letters this week stating that a number of current FOTA representatives, before the group was formed, agreed to the idea of a budget cap in January of 2008.

With this in mind and the FIA keen to receive all entries to next year’s World Championship – and without containing any additional conditions on FOTA applications – Mosley insisted that all full, unconditional entries should be organised by this Friday in order to give new teams a reasonable chance for 2010 preperation. He also described how FOTA teams can, by modifying the Concorde Agreement of 1998, be able to enter the championship before then being able to write a new draft ahead of next year, meaning rule changes can take place in the process.

Believing that the upmost effort has been applied in order to seek an answer to the disagreement and following FOTA’s own meeting at Renault’s Enstone base – a stone’s throw from Silverstone – on Thursday evening, the group released the following statement:

‘Since the formation of FOTA last September the teams have worked together and sought to engage the FIA and commercial rights holder (Formula One Management, lead by Bernie Ecclestone), to develop and improve the sport. Unprecedented worldwide financial turmoil has inevitably placed great challenges before the F1 community. FOTA is proud that it has achieved the most substantial measures to reduce costs in the history of our sport. In particular the manufacturer teams have provided assistance to the independent teams, a number of which would probably not be in the sport today without the FOTA initiatives.

The FOTA teams have further agreed upon a substantial voluntary cost reduction that provides a sustainable model for the future. Following these efforts all the teams have confirmed to the FIA and the commercial rights holder that they are willing to commit until the end of 2012. The FIA and the commercial rights holder have campaigned to divide FOTA.

The wishes of the majority of the teams are ignored. Furthermore, tens of millions of dollars have been withheld from many teams by the commercial rights holder, going back as far as 2006. Despite this and the uncompromising environment, FOTA has genuinely sought compromise. It has become clear however, that 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.

Teams revealed for 2010

The FIA has announced the entry list for next year’s World Championship. All current teams are included in the selection, which sees new entrants USF1, Campos and Manor join the grid, meaning a total of thirteen teams and twenty-six cars will be taking part in F1 next year.

Revealing the line-up shortly before midday (CET) on Friday, the FIA revealed the long-awaited list deciding the line-up for next season, which had been predicted as tainted due to the recent spat between the governing body and the FOTA (Formula One Teams Association). Although FOTA remains in disagreement over the proposed €45m budget cap, FIA president Max Mosley announced this week that – due to sporting regulations – the rule can now only be modified with the consent of all competitors, meaning further meetings can now take place.

After another meeting with Mosley this week, the FIA has reached the decision that all current teams shall be accepted for entry; however the BMW, Brawn, Toyota and McLaren squads’ entries remain conditional with more get-togethers imminent to signal an end to the costs row. Should any of the teams not make it to the grid, it is believed that the FIA has another five new entrants waiting in the wings.

A total of 26 cars means that next year’s starting grid will be the largest since the 1995 Monaco Grand Prix, with newcomers Campos, Manor and USF1 joining the fraternity; Spanish team Campos – led by former F1 driver Adrian Campos will be making the jump from the F1 feeder series, whereas Manor Grand Prix will be headed by Formula 3 team boss John Booth and Nick Firth, a former F1 team owner. Previously highly expected for entry, USF1 is headed by Ken Anderson and ex-Williams team manager Peter Windsor and make up the grid. All new teams will be running with Cosworth engines.

The team and engine line-up for the 2010 FIA Formula One World Championship is as follows:

AT&T Williams – Toyota
BMW Sauber F1 Team – BMW
Brawn GP Formula One Team – TBA
Campos Grand Prix – Cosworth
Force India F1 Team – Mercedes
Manor Grand Prix – Cosworth
Panasonic Toyota Racing – Toyota
Red Bull Racing – TBA
Renault F1 Team – Renault
Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro – Ferrari
Scuderia Toro Rosso – TBA
Team US F1 – Cosworth
Vodafone McLaren Mercedes – Mercedes

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Force India submits 2010 entry against FOTA wishes

The Force India team has become the second to break Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) ranks and submit an entry to the 2010 World Championship. The Silverstone-based team, headed by Vijay Mallya, has put forward an unconditional entry that will not be declared invalid in the event of the FIA budget cap remaining in place.

With the association remaining firmly against the €45m cap, Williams has already been suspended from FOTA as a result of putting entry forward early after claiming that it was legally bound to do so. With Force India now having taken the same action, the FIA’s list of potential candidates for next year grows by one. The team has released a statement, however, claiming that its decision does not reflect a disagreement with FOTA.

It reads: ‘While the Force India team is broadly in agreement with the FOTA objectives, commercial obligations have demanded that Force India review its conditional entry jointly submitted by FOTA on deadline day (last Friday, 29 May). This has been done today with full transparency between all parties. The details of the team’s position will be discussed between Dr.Vijay Mallya and FOTA vice chairman John Howett tomorrow. No further comment will be made until those discussions have taken place.’

Howett has admitted that the team could face the same sanction as Williams. “It is likely they may be suspended,” he said. “I haven’t really had the opportunity to speak to Vijay directly, but he has committed in accordance with FOTA a conditional entry and apparently, due to commercial issues – totally unrelated to another team or support – they felt obliged because of other binding legal activities that, due to funding or other issues, they needed to submit an official entry.

“He will be here tomorrow and I will speak to him; I have to say it is the intention of FOTA to suspend them based on a face-to-face discussion with Vijay, but he has confirmed to me through Bob Fearnley that he is totally supportive and committed to FOTA.”

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All teams submit 2010 entries

The Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) has announced that all ten teams currently on the grid will be putting entries forward to the FIA on Friday to confirm their long-term commitment to the sport. After much wrangling over the issue, however, FOTA has noted several conditions under which entrants will be competing.

With a £40m budget cap proposed by governing body the FIA and possibility of a ‘two-tier’ championship, five teams – Toyota, Red Bull, Renault, Ferrari and BMW – has all made threats to leave Formula One in the event of the scheme not being modified. Although Williams had already entered next year’s championship on Monday, Friday’s news coming as huge relief to F1 fans across the world. However, the association did admit that it has made several compromises on its way to reaching a final decision.

The official statement from FOTA reads that all teams have agreed to enter the sport for the next three seasons as well as taking ‘significant actions’ to managing costs in F1. It also stated that all ten members will be ‘creating a mechanism that will preserve the technological competition and the sporting challenge’ as well as assisting new teams.

Importantly, the statement also stressed that teams will only be entering the championship in the event that the Concorde Agreement, by which all competitors will compete, will be signed by all teams no later than 12 June, the date on which the FIA will release the full line-up for next year’s championship.

The association also insisted that conditions under which all ten teams will go racing must include a championship with only one set of technical regulations in use (such as in 2009) and that FOTA will be treated as one by the FIA. The statement concluded:

‘All FOTA teams now look forward with optimism to collaborating proactively and productively with the FIA, with a view to establishing a solid foundation on which the future of a healthy and successful Formula One can be built, providing lasting stability and sound governance.’

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Williams applies for 2010 championship

The Williams team has become the first of the current entries on the grid to submit an entry for the 2010 World Championship. Having discussed ongoing matters with governing body the FIA and fellow competitors in Monaco over the weekend, the team has also raised awareness that a higher budget cap limit has been confirmed. With the ongoing FOTA-FIA dispute over the proposed £40m budget cap for 2010 still yet to be officially resolved, the Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) met with the FIA’s Max Mosley and Formula One Management’s (FOM) Bernie Ecclestone several times in Monte-Carlo with the target of abolishing any possibilities of a ‘two-tier’ World Championship next year.

“The unity of FOTA is of paramount importance to Williams,” team chief executive Adam Parr told Reuters, as the team’s decision to enter for next season raises the percentages that an agreement has been found between teams and the FIA “Yesterday we joined the other members of FOTA in writing to the FIA to request a continuing effort to find a compromise concerning the regulations for 2010.”

Believes FOTA’s leadership of Luca di Montezemolo and John Howett has ‘extracted some very significant concessions from the FIA,’ Parr spoke of his team’s position from its Grove headquarters, hinting that a higher budget cap has been established.

“Williams has – and has always maintained – that we have a binding contract with both FOM and the FIA to participate in the world championship from 2008 to 2010. We have been paid in full for our participation and we feel both morally and legally obliged to make it clear that we will participate in Formula One in the future as we have in the past 30 years.

“We owe this to our employees, our sponsors and the fans, all of whom are affected by statements that the teams may not enter next year’s championship.”

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