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GP Week : Issue 38
Exclusive: US F1 direct TEAM US F1, which is set to enter Formula 1 in 2010, has welcomed last week’s FIA World Motor Sport Council decision to allow relative freedom of technological innovation to teams who stay under a £30 million (US $42 million) budget cap, despite protestations from FOTA that such a system could turn Formula 1 “on its head.” Team US F1 Sporting Director Peter Windsor, left, has told GPWeek that the introduction of such an option to the sport was “commendable, courageous” and a “very positive”move. “Our reaction is very positive,”he said. “It’s very easy to come out with all the usual clichés when new rules are proposed – ‘we need stability’and ‘don’t change the essence of the sport’, etc, etc – but the reality of 2009 is that we are in a major economic recession. To say ‘let’s keep things stable’ is to be blind to the truth. “That said, there is a standard response these days when cost-cutting becomes inevitable: introduce spec parts on the cars, slash expensive races from the calendar and cut back on testing. That the FIA have managed to come up with a set of rules that don’t fall into any of those traps I think is not only commendable but also courageous.” Windsor pointed to the recent example of NASCAR’s attempts to cut costs as an example of how not to react to the global economic crisis. “NASCAR is the second most successful form of motor sport in the world after F1 yet their response to the recession has been merely to cut back on testing. Meanwhile, sponsors are pulling out or reducing their spending and guys are being laid-off in their hundreds. The FIA’s new rules by contrast actually get to the heart of the problem without reducing in any way the unique essence of F1 – which is to say its technology. And, guess what? If you still want to spend $300m to go racing you are free to do so. So there shouldn’t be any complaints from any quarter.” Windsor confirmed to GPWeek that Team US F1 was certain to take