“The tyres are wrong”
The FIA is “nervous” ahead of formula one’s still-controversial return to Bahrain in 2013.
After the 2011 race was cancelled due to civil unrest in the island Kingdom, the sport’s return to Sakhir this year was hugely controversial. And “top-level figures” at the sport’s Paris-based governing body “are already nervous” that the 2013 edition – scheduled for next late April – will be “another horrifying embarrassment”, according to Times correspondent Kevin Eason.
Pay television company Sky could replace formula one’s own broadcaster, according to a report in the Times.
Journalist Kevin Eason said Barney Francis, the managing director of F1′s new British broadcaster Sky Sports, will be in the Austin paddock this weekend. “He wants to introduce 3D to F1 and will have talks with Bernie Eccclestone”, Eason wrote.
The cost of a formula one driver’s mandatory FIA ‘super license’ is going up, the Times newspaper reports.
It emerged in Abu Dhabi last weekend that teams have been told by the governing body that the price of their official entry fees for the 2013 season are definitely increasing significantly. Journalist Kevin Eason said Red Bull’s success this year is likely to earn the team a more than $3 million FIA bill for 2013, while even straggler HRT is facing a minor increase to the flat rate.
Bernie Ecclestone agreed to reduce the race fee as he extended Korea’s grand prix contract through 2016, the AFP news agency reports.
F1′s annual trip since 2010 to Mokpo is among the most controversial and least popular on the calendar, but promoter Park Won-Hwa said on Friday a new contract has been signed. “We had to renegotiate with Mr Ecclestone and brought a few ideas and persuaded him that Korea cannot continue the event with such a big financial loss,” he said.
Korea, among F1′s new breed of grands prix, is far from the most popular stop on the sport’s annual calendar.
Well-known British F1 photographer Darren Heath tweeted from the metropolis Seoul: “Fantastic 3 days. Early train to Mokpo tomorrow. “(It’s) like being in London then heading to Shetland for an F1 GP. Mad,” he concluded.
“We will see what we can do. I think we are a good team together.” – Martin Whitmarsh
McLaren has slightly upped its monetary offer in a late bid to secure Lewis Hamilton’s services for 2013, according to multiple British newspapers. The Daily Mail said McLaren has increased its offer by EUR 2.5 million to 15 million, which is still less than his current retainer of about 19 million.
Christian Horner has emphatically denied suggestions he might be the next Bernie Ecclestone.
Already very close to the sport’s 81-year-old ‘supremo’ Ecclestone – who is at the middle of a potentially-damaging corruption affair – the name ‘Horner’ is often mentioned in the paddock as perhaps Ecclestone’s preferred successor.
De Villota is currently in hospital with reportedly “severe facial and head injuries”.
Spain’s motor racing federation has vowed to help get to the bottom of the incident involving seriously injured female test driver Maria de Villota. But Carlos Gracia, president of the RFEdA, expressed caution in light of rampant speculation following the 32-year-old Spaniard’s impact with a team truck whilst ‘straightline testing’ Marussia’s 2012 car in the UK on Tuesday.
He crashed almost within sight of the chequered flag in a dice with Williams’ Pastor Maldonado
Lewis Hamilton should have known better before going wheel-to-wheel with Pastor Maldonado in the dying stages of Sunday’s European grand prix. That is the view of the McLaren driver’s boss Martin Whitmarsh, after the British team’s top 2012 driver fell 23 points off the championship lead at Valencia.
McLaren moved to play down rumours Lewis Hamilton might quit the team even before his contract expires at the end of this year.
Reports late last week said that despite McLaren offering the 2008 over $30 million per year to stay in 2013 and beyond, sources are hinting 27-year-old Hamilton has already decided to leave due to repeated team errors and a mysterious lack of pace.
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