Daily #F1 News and Comment: Saturday 28th September 2013

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Supermarket Sweep (11:50)

Change at the FIA (12:16)


Supermarket Sweep

Red Bull continues its search for partners to feed the hungry race crew in the various countries they travel to. Having teamed up with Kaufland in Germany, Simply in Italy and Seven 11 in Singapore, the Milton Keynes Marketeers have found a suitable partner for the Korean GP.


Formally named ‘Family Mart’, the largest Korean franchise chain of local convenience stores was re-branded in the Autumn of 2012 to CU.

The former Caudwell Group company who popularised the whole 4U concept in branding their chain of mobile telephone stores appears to be the inspiration for the re-branding. CU actually stands for Convenience for You.

Amusingly, there is a sub-division of the brand for stores which stay open 24 hours called ‘CU Later’. On current form will this be Sebastian Vettel’s cheeky message to the rest of the field as he disappears over the horizon to nail the hopes of Fernando stone dead for 2013.

Cynics may suggest there is a real synergy between Red Bull and CU. The 8,000 store chain used to pay royalties for the ‘Family’ Mart’ name to a Japanese parent. However, they appear to have discovered a way of circumventing the franchise regulations in this re-branding exercise and will now avoid their international payments of homage to Japan.

Ahn Nang-kyun representing CU said they hoped to, “maintain cooperative relations with the Japanese franchise to contribute to mutual growth”.

(Rumour has it Red Bull have expressed an interest in recruiting Ahn Nang-kyun for their PR team 😉  )


Change at the FIA

As an F1 fan, I applaud the candidacy of David Ward for president of the FIA and his manifesto for openness and accountability. This week it has been rumoured that a third runner may yet enter the race.

Mohammed bin Sulayem is the 51 year old President of the Automobile and Touring Club of the UAE. Sources close to him describe him as ambitious and with his appointment in June to the chair of a new Motor Sport Development Task Force there is a likelihood that he will challenge Todt in this years elections.

The Gulf News report that bin Sulayem “is aware of the speculation regarding the FIA Presidency and it can be confirmed that he has been contacted in recent weeks by a number of national sporting authorities from around the world who have expressed a desire for him to run as a candidate. At this stage, he has seen David Ward’s manifesto and has now asked to see Jean Todt’s manifesto as well. Any decision he makes after that will be based on what is best for the FIA going forwards.

Apologies by the way to TJ13 fans for missing the FIA’s big announcement last night – that the 2014 cars will actually have Pirelli rubber to shod their wheel rims, but there are extenuating circumstances surrounding this. I have written to the FIA presidential candidates to try to ensure this doesn’t happen in the future.

Dear Mr. Gnome, Dave and Mo

I have a request. I’m up for all the transparency malarkey and I believe both of you are in the Max Mosley camp on how to run F1 and bringing back the ‘whip’ approach, but there are a couple of administrative details that would be great if they could be attended to as well.

I understand Tuesday is a half day in the Place de Concorde as lunch is taken around 12:00. Yes, Wednesday is a business breakfast which lasts all day and you are all incommunicado, but can we please stop deciding all he really important stuff – on the rare occasions this is done – late on a Friday?

The rest of us have been working all week and want to bugger off to a bar and chill out. Fans don’t really read F1 sites on a Friday night as much – so nobody is listening to the FIA’s pearls of wisdom.

Kind Regards



4 responses to “Daily #F1 News and Comment: Saturday 28th September 2013

  1. Does anyone really believe old Sully when he says any decision he makes whether or not to stand will be “based on the best interests of the FIA going forwards”? I mean come on – people like that get to where they are by acting only in their own best interests and by arranging extensive support networks of other people whose interests are also aligned to their success. At the senior administration levels, sport is about politics and (whisper it) corruption, so spare us the baloney about his decision being made “based on the best interests of the FIA”.

    This kind of simplistic propaganda might go down with the naive population of Sully’s home state but if he’s looking to step up to be a truly global player he might do well to employ some more sophisticated spin doctors.

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