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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Big news at Mercedes

The brand new Mercedes team made some news today, settling its dispute with Henkel, after a former company employee signed a sponsorship deal without the company’s approval, as well as agreeing to a deal with Petronas.

What? There was bigger news?

Oh yeah, the team signed some German driver to a three-year contract.

That’s right, heeeeeeeeeee’s baaaaaaaaaaaaaaack.

International German Motorbike Championship Day 1


Seven-times champion Michael Schumacher has come out of retirement to driver for old boss Ross Brawn.

The 41-year-old will partner with Nico Rosberg, 15 years his junior.

“After three years I have the energy back and I'm ready for some serious stuff,” Schumacher was quoted by the BBC. “I want to have fun out there and I feel as fresh as ever. I've recharged myself after a three-year break. The challenge is what I look for - I want to know it.”

Schumacher, who called off a return last year subbing for the injured Felipe Massa at Ferrari due to a neck injury, the result of a motorcycling accident, says he is fit as a fiddle and ready to go. He credited his return to Mercedes, who gave him his F1 break.

“I got a call from Ross asking me to race again, telling me Mercedes were going to be involved. The only reason I came back was because of old friends at Mercedes. I spent years trying to get into F1 with Mercedes but it wasn't possible before. I hope I'll be judged by what I've done before but Mercedes is a strong partner and I'm thrilled to be back.”

US F1, Campos Meta say they will be on the grid

Newcomers US F1 and Campos Meta found themselves once again defending their commitment to participating in 2010 after comments by Bernie Ecclestone cast doubts on their ability to make it on the grid in March.

“I'm surprised Bernie said that. We will be there. We're in good shape,” US F1’s Peter Windsor told the BBC.


Adrian Campos echoed Windsor’s surprise. “My opinion is Bernie does not have all the information. We are working very hard.”

Ecclestone’s statements appeared in the Times.

Cosworth, supplying engines to both teams, did not express concerns when asked by the BBC.

“There is no indication that operationally there are any issues,” Cosworth commercial director Mark Gallagher said.

Teams scupper combined launch plans

The Formula 1 teams have shelved a plan to launch on the same day
, due to concerns about the ability of several teams to meet the Luca date and over press coverage, but will revisit the idea for 2011. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Kobayashi to Sauber

Sauber have signed Kamui Kobayashi, who impressed subbing for Timo Glock last season at Toyota, for 2010.

F1 Grand Prix of Japan - Practice


The tester finished sixth in Abu Dhabi.

It is undetermined who will be his teammate at the former BMW squad, now back in the hands of Peter Sauber. Giancarlo Fisichella, Pedro de la Rosa, and Nick Heidfeld have all been mentioned in connection with the team. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Renault sells majority stake to investment group

Team retains engine manufacturing base

Renault will remain in Formula 1, but the French auto manufacturer has sold approximately 75 percent of the Enstone operation to Luxembourg-based investment firm Genii Capital.

F1 Young Drivers Testing - Day One


Renault maintains control over engine manufacturing facility in Viry-Chatillon, and the team will continue to supply Red Bull for 2010, as well.

Red Bull's engine supply had been in doubt while Renault weighed its options.

What effect this will have on drivers, including Robert Kubica, who had been signed to replace the departing Fernando Alonso, is unknown. The team is slated to run on a limited budget. What is assured is the team will continue to compete as Renault.

Renault had claimed to have multiple suitors to the team. One was David Richards' Prodrive.

A letter of intent should be concluded next year. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Branson launches Virgin

Sir Richard Branson surprised the F1 world by officially launching Manor GP as Virgin Racing.

Oh, you knew that was going to happen? Well, now it is official, and we have learned:
  • Virgin Racing will have the smallest budget on the grid: £40million
  • Virgin Racing will have the most stylish jackets

Virgin Racing Media Launch


When explaining his decision to move from champions Brawn GP to his own squad, Branson said:

"Our first year in F1 was tremendous for the Virgin brand, so why not go in again with a new team from scratch?"


The mogul continued to say with “engineering prowess, great drivers and a great affinity with the public” on its side the team was destined for great things.

Timo Glock had been revealed as a driver previously. He will team with Lucas di Grassi, Brazilian GP2 standout and ex-Renault test driver. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Trulli, Kovy for Lotus

Lotus F1 have confirmed its drivers for 2010: Toyota refugee Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen, late of McLaren.

Japanese Formula One Grand Prix: Qualifying


Both were signed to three-year deals.

Malaysian Fairuz Fauzy fills the test driver role.

The team also revealed its new logo today, keeping the famous Lotus colors.

Sponsor problem for Merc

Henkel, a German company, says it does not have a sponsorship deal with Mercedes (ex-Brawn), claiming the deal was put together by an ex-employee without consent.

The contract was for a three-year deal.

Lloyds subsidiary buys into Manor/Virgin

An arm of Lloyds Banking Group has purchased a minority stake in Manor GP
, soon to be Virgin Racing.

The deal is believed to be worth about £10m, according to the Financial Times.

The team is slated to reveal its drivers, along with its formal partnership with Richard Branson’s Virgin Group, Tuesday. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Friday, December 11, 2009

New scoring system

The FIA announced a new scoring system, in part due to the expanded grid for 2010, during the first meeting of the F1 Commission.

The Commission was created as part of the new Concorde Agreement.

Points will be awarded for first through tenth:

  1. 25
  2. 20
  3. 15
  4. 10
  5. 8
  6. 6
  7. 5
  8. 3
  9. 2
  10. 1

Other decisions included allowing Brawn to re-brand itself Mercedes and a push for ideas on how to spruce up the show.

Catch up on all the FIA has to say
.

Virgin territory

Virgin Racing is set to be officially unveiled next week in London after months of speculation about an agreement with newcomers Manor GP.

F1 Mar 2009


The team have Timo Glock signed up and will be using Cosworth power.

In other driver news, rumors still persist Mercedes is trying to make a deal with Michael Schumacher.

Germany's Bild newspaper is the latest to fan the flames, saying the team has offered the seven-time World Champion a one-year deal.

Who goes where? Keep up with the latest with the BBC's F1 2010 - driver line-ups.

Joint launch

F1's teams look set to try to jointly launch their 2010 challengers on the same day
, according to reports coming out of Monaco .

Mercedes' Nick Fry and Lotus' Tony Fernandes said their teams had agreed in principle to the event slated for the end of January at Valencia .

It remains to be seen if all the teams, especially the new ones, can have something ready in time.

"I won't have a car at that time. I could come with a Matchbox car," Fernandes said.

Silverstone set for 17 years

After losing the British Grand Prix to Donington, only to see Donington Ventures Leisure Limited fail to secure funding and put the race in jeopardy, Silverstone and Bernie Ecclestone agreed to a new 17-year deal to stage the race Monday.

"We've always had the belief the British Grand Prix was an important cornerstone of Formula One but, with Bernie, you're never quite sure," Silverstone managing director Richard Phillips said. "At the end of the day, though, you have to have a British Grand Prix."


Seemingly always under fire for the condition of the facilities, Silverstone plans several upgrades. The track says the long-term commitment the sport made to the track will enable it to get the investment it needs to compete with newer facilities. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Friday, December 4, 2009

Raikkonen heads to rally

Kimi Raikkonen has agreed to a deal with Citroen’s junior rally team for 2010.

Nesta Oil Rally of Finland - Day Two


The Finn is slated to take part in 12 of 13 events for the team. It is a one-year deal.

Raikkonen was impressive in his rally debut earlier this year before crashing out in spectacular fashion.

The BBC reports Citroen announced Raikkonen will pair with Kaj Lindstrom as co-driver. Lindstrom was Tommi Makinen’s co-driver in the 90s.

Renault considers multiple suitors

Renault is considering several bids to take over it’s F1 operation in addition to Prodrive, Jonathon Noble reports for AUTOSPORT.

The French concern held a meeting yesterday considering it’s F1 future.

Noble reports an organization led by businessmen Gerard Lopez may have the edge on David Richards’ company, despite feelings within the F1 team, due in part to Bernie Ecclestone’s blessing being given to Lopez’s Genii Capital company.

Renault is due to make a formal decision following a meeting next week.

Hildebrand pleased with testing debut

American J.R. Hildebrand was happy with how things turned out after his three-day test with Force India at Jerez.

Hildebrand completed a total of 142 laps during the test.

“Looking at it from a bit of a different perspective now that it's over, it's pretty incredible to have gotten the opportunity to drive a modern Formula 1 car,” Racer quotes the American.” I felt like I made the most of my time both in and out of the car over the last week, and am very satisfied with how things turned out... It was an amazing experience to work with the Force India team.”
Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Sauber gets the nod

It took a while, but the FIA finally confirmed Sauber will get the 13th spot on the 2010 grid.

BMW Sauber F1 Team Car Launch 2008


The announcement confirms the team wil be sold back to founder Peter Sauber, who bought the team from BMW on the condition it would be approved.

The FIA published an official statement today.

Meanwhile, Renault was holding another meeting today concerning the team’s future.

According to the BBC, rumor has it the company is looking to pull back to being an engine supplier.

But what of the team? Prodrive’s David Richards may be in the fold.

“We cannot comment on the Renault situation, but it is well known that our intention is to get into F1,” a team spokesman is quoted by Reuters. “We proved our credentials earlier this year when we had a strong business case for an entry, but having had an engine deal with Mercedes-Benz in place we were not willing to sacrifice our competitiveness.”

Young driver test concludes

Daniel Ricciardo topped the final day at Jerez, which saw a third day of action for American JR Hildebrand in the Force India.

  1. Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, 1:17.418
  2. Paul Di Resta, Force India, 1:18.736
  3. Gary Paffett, McLaren, 1:18.746
  4. Mike Conway, Brawn GP, 1:19.096
  5. Nico Hulkenberg, Williams, 1:19.226
  6. Bertrand Baguette, BMW Sauber, 1:19.356
  7. Oliver Turvey, McLaren, 1:19.358
  8. Marcus Ericsson, Brawn GP, 1:19.382
  9. Lucas di Grassi, Renault, 1:19.602
  10. JR Hildebrand, Force India, 1:19.873
  11. Pablo Sanchez Lopez, Ferrari, 1:21. 147
  12. Daniel Zampieri, Ferrari, 1:21.279
  13. Marco Zipoli, Ferrari, 1:21.725
  14. Brendon Hartley, Toro Rosso, 1:22.493
  15. Mirko Bortolotti, Toro Rosso, 1:23.271
  16. Ho-Pin Tung, Renault, 1:32.477
Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Day two at Jerez

F1 Young Drivers Testing - Day Two


The youngsters are back in action. Ferrari liked Bianchi so much they snapped him up.

  1. Gary Paffett, McLaren, 1:18.718
  2. Nico Hulkenberg, Williams, 1:19.184
  3. Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, 1:19.243
  4. Paul Di Resta, Force India, 1:19.411
  5. Esteban Gutierrez, BMW Sauber, 1:20.190
  6. Mike Conway, Brawn GP, 1:20.222
  7. Marcus Ericsson, Brawn GP, 1:20.440
  8. JR Hildebrand, Force India, 1:20.517
  9. Jules Bianchi, Ferrari, 1:20.586
  10. Lucas di Grassi, Renault, 1:20.898
  11. Ho-Pin Tung, Renault, 1:21.492
  12. Mirko Bortolotti, Toro Rosso, 1:21.761

Oh, and if you were looking forward to a return of the French Grand Prix... well, it may be a while. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Young drivers, and Americans, at Jerez

F1 Young Drivers Testing - Day One


  1. Andy Soucek, Williams, 1:19.158
  2. Paul Di Resta, Force India, 1:19.369
  3. Gary Paffett, McLaren, 1:19.426
  4. Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, 1:19.534
  5. Jules Bianchi, Ferrari, 1:19.626
  6. Mike Conway, Brawn GP, 1:19.920
  7. Alexander Rossi, BMW Sauber, 1:20.227
  8. Marcus Ericsson, Brawn GP, 1:20.333
  9. Bertrand Baguette, Renault, 1:20.511
  10. JR Hildebrand, Force India, 1:20.537
  11. Oliver Turvey, McLaren, 1:20.856
  12. Brendon Hartley, Toro Rosso, 1:21.325


F1 Young Drivers Testing - Day One
Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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