Is a black cloud about to come down on Formula One? It sure seems as though this season is going to get very interesting the farther into we go. And not because of the stuff on the track; but the stuff off of it. The Formula One Teams Association met this week to discuss the FIA’s plan to install a budget cap of 40 million Euros per season. Essentially what many of them (including Ferrari and BMW) object to is the fact that there are different incentives for teams who operate under the cap vs. teams that don’t. Essentially what they are saying is that Formula One is going to become a two-tiered system, and they are not happy at all. For years now, Bernie Ecclestone has ruled Formula One with an iron fist and not had anyone to challenge him. The teams keep on saying that they will break away and form their own series eventually, but that has yet to come to a head. This year though, what with Brawn GP and the “Super Diffuser” debate taking off, the teams may actually come to blows – figuratively I assume – over the future of the sport.
On another note, there is a race this weekend in Spain and it should be quite interesting. Kimi Raikkonen won last year for Ferrari, and they will be under the microscope for this weekend. In fact, many teams will be under the microscope as many are introducing their own versions of the super diffuser to try and get back some of the pace of the front runners. The true test will, of course, come in the second qualifying where we can see the outright pace of the fastest cars in the field. Will the Ferraris and BMWs and McLarens gain anything on the Red Bulls and the Brawns? Only time and technological innovation will tell for sure.
Also of note is the fact that many of the drivers are now responding to a comment that Herr Mosley made about Formula One living on if Ferrari were no longer involved. Drivers like Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Giancarlo Fisichella voiced their displeasure at the comment. All of them went on to say that without Ferrari, there is no F1. Felipe Massa wants nothing at all to do with any politics saying: “It would be nice to have a better sport, you know, less political and more sport is all I can say.” A better sport. Well, if it were up to me (and it isn’t) that better sport would arrive thanks to no more Max Mosley and certainly no more Bernie Ecclestone.