"It’s about power"…

…is what Bernie Ecclestone said at the start of the impending Formula One civil war. As it so often is, battles at the pinnacle are always about power than principle. F1 and the FIA are being run by geriatric, whimsical, eccentric, illogical dweebs, and legacy teams like Ferrari and McLaren have just about had enough with their nonsense.

Consider:

– Cost reductions and “Go-Green” for 2009: Changed car specs. It cost money. Added KERS. Cost money. Hammed away on diffusers and then converted illegal designs to legal. Cost money and the Championship. Now the teams are doing away with KERS. Cost money.
Where did they save money anyway?

– Budget cap of 40 million pounds for 2010: To encourage new entrants to confidently take up Formula 1. When did F1 deserve to be dumbed down this way? Since I have been following the sport, I understand it to be the pinnacle of automotive design and practice. New technologies debut in F1 and hit commercial sports cars 3 years later before finally trickling into standard road cars after 5-7 years. ABS is a case in point. McLaren’s Ron Dennis, although generally reviled, had correctly stated a few years back at the height of the Orange-Arrows collapse that “the sport is a meritocracy”. If you can’t take the heat, stay the heck out of the kitchen.

The FIA also removed all driver aids like traction control, automatic gears, etc in the name of “encouraging racing”. Heck, if people got bored watching Michael Schumacher win it was because he was a genius! No amount of technological dumbing is going to change that!

And now we have a budget cap which means cutbacks, loss of employment, stunted research and development, mediocre cars and a two-tier championship. We’ve had a two-tier championship for the first few races of this year when some of the teams were using different diffusers and gaining speed advantages.

– Power-hungry, crazed lunatics at the helm: If Max Moseley’s Nazi-butt-slapping wasn’t enough to wake up teams to his senility; recent showdowns have proved that part. Bernie Ecclestone has always been a smart man, and I still think he is. However, he is the most money-hungry, power-hungry bastard in the sport. After selling off his stake to a private-equity firm, he now pimps the world in search of ciruits that satisfy his and his masters’ perennial greed for money.

– Disregard for heritage: Racing or F1 meccas have been systematically culled. Canada – chop. USA – no revenues – chop. France – chop. Silverstone, the birthplace of F1 – chop! They even considered chopping Spa Francorchamps!! So where are we racing now? Middle-eastern oil abodes with sea-face and plenty of money to throw.

My guess is, when F1 suffers, so do the R&D capabilities of the parent company, which if it is into making road-cars, means an erosion of their technical acumen and competitive advantage. You want to pull the industry out of bankruptcy? Invest in R&D and F1 as the ultimate test-bed.

I welcome a breakaway championship with a full return to technology, excellence, overall snobbery and a consensus-based system of governance. I don’t care what they call it..FOTA1, Formula Zero, F*** F1…whatever. Just to see the top teams racing together with no restrictions heralds a glorious return for the automobile.

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