I have always been attracted to watching F1 racing by the levels of money that racing teams spend to outwit each other. It beggers belief sometimes when you take into consideration that the cost of each vehicle sitting on the grid at a F1 race is in the region of £4 million. What is even more amazing is to consider the cost when you have a six car pile up. Within 10 seconds of pure mayhem (usually at a corner shortly after the start of a race) £20 million worth of technology goes careering into each other in a mind warping collision of speed, colour and drivers pride. It certainly is an amazing sport to watch.
As a seasoned fan of F1 racing I have watched for years as the governing body have tried to make the sport more and more interesting. For many years people were saying it was the driving skills of Michael Schumacker that made it boring. While I totally agree that he was a phenominal driver, I do not support the theory that he was the muscle behind a great racing team, and at last the launch of Brawn-Mercedes this year has begun to proove me right. It is the mental ability of the team behind a great driver that use pit stops and track position to their complete advantage to win races by skill and a complete understanding of how track dynamics can play into your hands. And so a team with nil racing credit to their name walk onto the track in 2009 and show the F1 world that Ross Brawn is a Racing Mogal in his own right.
On Michael’s departure, we saw Renault charge through to pole position and take the world championship and then young Lewis Hamilton find himself in a very quick McLaren Mercedes and wowed the world with skill no one could imagine a complete new commer to the sport could have. And so the last three years have produced many interesting twists and turns as we watch Farari struggle to keep up, the likes of Toyota almost getting there but never quite having enough, Renault going up and down like a yoyo and Honda just throwing in the towel completly. Yes it is a hard sport. And I feel that the likes of Farari are using this opportunity to throw their weight about because they have not had much success over the last few years. It makes sense that they want to continue to throw as much money as they can at winning back their title as world no 1. But it is wonderful watching the likes of Ross Brawn and Red Bull Racing coming along and giving them a good face slap.
I think there is a flip side on every coin. It would be wonderful to see another three teams on the track next year just to mix it up a bit more. But part of the wow factor of F1 racing has always been the ultimate wealth that goes with running a F1 racing team, and the celebraty status that the vast amounts of money attract. I mean common racing in the streets of Monaco! You don’t get much more special than that. Is a budget cap going to loose that extra special flavour that F1 sport has built up over decades of attraction? In my opinion if the FIA’s approach remains dogmatic enought to split the sport we are only destined to be hurt in the long run. We know that there is major interest in the Middle East to attract a F1 style rich man’s sport to its shores. A break away group is only going to fragment a fantastically competitive and dynamic playing feild that I personally have enjoyed watching as i grew up. Lets just hope that in the long run these guys get it sorted out!