Breaking News: Friday March 8th 2013

Will we see Marussia in Melbourne

untitledA cheeky headline I know, because the team are going to Melbourne but it appears they have amusingly got Mr. E by the short and curlys. Ecclestone claimed recently that bi-lateral deals were done under the Concorde banner with all the teams including Marussia

Mr. E’s platoon of highly paid lawyers seems to have missed something. Marussia are saying they have no deal in place with Bernie et al because it does not include provisions for the broadcasting of the team/drivers/sponsors image rights.

The team say in a press release, “We are in active discussion with the Commercial Rights Holder but, as of today we do not have a signed agreement with them.”

Last week John Booth commented that he felt a deal was not far away. “It’s getting pretty close now, nothing is signed yet, but it’s getting pretty close now.”

Of course until the agreement is signed Marussia cannot get a share of the F1 pie at all, but rather cleverly they appear to be making life most tricky for the F1 supremo.

John Booth was asked whether it was important to get a deal done in time for Melbourne. He replied with a faint smile, “No [it’s not vital for Marussia ahead of Australia. It’s vital for Bernie because he won’t be able to film us without it.”

untitledNo deal in place would cause serious problems for FOM TV. We all remember the invisible Force India cars in Bahrain qualifying 2012, yet to omit those cars were relatively easy to do. In a race it could be highly problematic.

Mmm. Mr. E can’t be happy. Heads must roll.

Sir Frank and Lady Williams

untitledIt is sad to hear today of the death of Lady Virginia Williams who had battled cancer for some years. Ginny as she was affectionately called by many, was a feisty Lady and wrote an acclaimed book about life with Frank, entitled ‘A Different Kind Of Life’.

Many have observed that following Sir Frank’s fateful car crash with Peter Windsor, she was the fortitude behind him recovering from the devastating mental shock of being faced with a life in a wheelchair.

15 responses to “Breaking News: Friday March 8th 2013

  1. Could it be that Grahame Chilton is actually a bigger asset to Marussia than Max as the team is slowly becoming a force to be reckoned with, especially when it comes to commercial negotiation?

  2. If they can avoid FI in practice they can do a reasonable job of avoiding Marussia in the race. Its probably only when they are being lapped by the leaders that there would be a conflict. Or if they crash. I am also sure that there will be a fall-back default clause which operates if a separate commercial agreement is not reached. If not Bernie will forge ahead anyway!

    • I’m not so sure it is that easy – and what will the legal consequence of showing the car. Take the start for example, this will require new angles and coverage. If the car is seen once – for 1 second – is that a breach? How much can they then sue for?

      • I wonder how they propose to show the start without a glimpse of their cars?

        Also, if they wanted to make a point, all they have to do is ‘break down’ on the start/finish line just before the leader reaches it on the last lap….

        • Well they are claiming FOM must not show their cars – as they will be in breach of image rights. There must be something punitive if there is indeed a breach – usually damages assessed in a monetary form

          • I think you will find that FOM own all rights to all images taken by everyone at all GPs. Only licensed photographers may sell or use images other than FOM. Or am I talking bollocks? 🙂

          • You are right as the teams sign those rights to FOM under Concorde. Marussia have not signed Concorde but have been accepted by FIA to compete, paid the fee. It’s an interesting anomaly.

  3. I think Marussia have more to lose by not being shown on television cameras, to be honest. I know that Bernie might be being a bit irritating by not reaching an agreement, but ultimately Marussia will be unable to compete without it. They can turn up to races and not be filmed, and most people won’t notice due to their position in the bottom three teams (Toro Rosso, Caterham and Marussia), but Marussia don’t have many sponsors, and the ones that are there will either need success, or they will need television exposure, and with fewer races being free to air in the countries where the majority of their sponsors come from and the blow of not being on the FOM-produced world feed, the sponsors will only be staying out of personal loyalty to the drivers or the teams rather than being able to appear on television with them. I’m sure the situation will be sorted by the first race, but I still think that Marussia are in a precarious position until the deal is done.

    • You are absolutely right, but you are also absolutely thinking like Bernie and it looks as if Marussia has (finally) decided to be stuborn – and temporary ‘stupid’ – rather than obeying and ‘smart’….

  4. So Renault believes it hasn’t received enough recognition for its F1 triumphs? I’ve always been a fan of the Renault road cars. Always thought they were awesome to drive and this is evident from the great reviews they receive from the worlds automotive media. But I’ve never thought about actually buying one due to their styling. With the new version of the Clio, they’ve had the chance to bring something totally new to the table. I’m sure it will be great to drive as always, but is it something that will boost worldwide sales? Probably not… Once again they have failed in producing a hot hatch that looks aggressive from the first glance. It must be said that part of the lack of sales is down to the general consensus that cars made in France are rubbish. Here’s a picture for any one who has not seen the latest Clio 200 EDC:

    • Beg to differ old chap, I have only recently very reluctantly traded in my 15 year old Xantia which was an excellent and extremely comfortable car which did 45mpg (diesel turbo). The latest MOT test regs mean a single spot of rust on a metal pipe can be an MOT failure. Since the Xantia has miles of pipe most of which has some corrosion on it, a very expensive period was going to happen. But I very much miss the ride quality which has no equal until you get to other cars with hyro/pneumatic suspension. France used to lead the field, the DS Pallas was a masterpiece of both style and innovation.
      Also like Saab they are made for tall people with normal length arms. I had an Afla once where you sit sideways (the pedals a off to one side) with knees hunched up and arms at full stretch.

  5. Let’s say you have a failing team. And a bunch of others who want to challenge the CA, but can’t risk their cflows. So this team picks the most technical of objections that gets to the heart of copyright law, as a apparently “trivial” sticking point. Hmmmm

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