Power of dreams
Racecar Engineering|December 2020
F1 needs to stop chasing manufacturers, and court technology instead
MIKE BLANCHET

Despite the disappointing withdrawal of Honda, plus Covid-19, on the face of it Formula 1 appears to be in surprisingly good shape. Surely, all involved in attaining a 17-round World Championship worthy of the title during this pandemic have to be hugely applauded. Nonetheless, the situation is unlikely to be sustainable longer term, so a turnaround in the virus threat cannot come too soon, just as it applies to life and work in general.

Although buoyed by all the teams signing up to the new Concorde Agreement, F1 is more fragile than seems to be generally appreciated. Imagine if Dieter Matezitch, Gene Haas and Lawrence Stroll – very wealthy men who are indulging a passion as much as a business – suddenly found their reasons for competing no longer suffiiently appealing. Half the grid could be decimated by the actions of just three individuals. It is not a given that others with the necessary financial muscle would step in.

Though extremely welcome, and a confidence boost to F1 investment, Williams’ rescue by Dorilton Capital cannot necessarily be seen as a template for the future. Unless, perhaps, the level of self-suffiiency Toto Wolff claims Mercedes-AMG has attained can be more widely achieved.

Not enough

The FIA and Liberty Media are not daft and realise this, of course, hence the contorted process of achieving a cost cap (sort of) to even out the competition, plus new chassis regulations to improve the racing. A good step, but nowhere near enough.

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