#F1 Daily News and Comment: Saturday 6th December 2014


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Previously on The Judge 13:

#F1 Features: The fall of the empire, part one: The inevitable goes unseen

#TJ13 #F1 Courtroom Podcast: Well that solved entirely nothing…

Red Bull Ram Raid

Haas barking up the wrong tree

Red Bull Ram Raid


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At around 01:30 am Saturday morning, the headquarters of Red Bull Racing was raided by thieves, who rammed two vehicles through the glass reception frontage causing devastation.

TJ13 has been informed some of the trophies are in fact the originals and not just replicas, and the thieves helped themselves to around 60 in total, including last years WCC and WDC record breaking trophies.

The two vehicles were stolen and had foreign number plates fitted. The bottom two cabinets in reception were smashed and the contents removed.


On the black market the trophies are worth little, though Red Bull have requested anyone with information should contact them at media@redbullracing.com and are considering whether to issue a reward for information leading to their return.

The police can be contacted on 0044 1865 841148 (outside UK) 01865 841148 (UK residents)

“We are obviously devastated by this serious factory break-in, which saw offenders drive a vehicle through our front entrance and steal more than 60 trophies which took years and hard work to accumulate,” Christian Horner commented.

“The break-in caused significant damage and was very upsetting for our night officers who were on duty at the time.

The offenders took items that not only did not belong to them, but which represented the efforts of a group of dedicated, hard-working individuals.


Beyond the aggressive nature of this break-in, we are perplexed why anyone would take these trophies.

The value to the team is of course extraordinarily high due to the sheer hard work and effort that went into winning each and every one.

But their intrinsic value is low; they would be of little benefit to those outside of the team and, in addition to that, many of the trophies on display were replicas.

The actions of these men mean it’s likely that we will have to make our site less accessible in the future, which will be unfair on the hundreds of fans that travel to visit our factory each year to see our trophies and our Formula 1 car.

We would like to appeal to anyone who knows any information on the whereabouts of these trophies or the offenders involved to contact Thames Valley Police.”

Social media has been swift to respond. Jokes suggesting this was Vettel’s revenge for being handed a useless one third size bovine replica on his last day at the factory are doing the rounds.

Further, the latest picture released suggests police may have indeed found the trophies 😉




Haas barking up the wrong tree?

The shifting sands in Formula One at times move quickly. Caterham, Virgin and HRT discovered this following the commercial rights holder’s website declaration in 2009 that, “The three new teams are all expected to run under the FIA’s voluntary budget cap and all have three-year engine contracts in place with Cosworth, who will return to Formula One racing for the first time since 2006”.

Three teams and Cosworth made it, but the cost cap didn’t as retiring FIA Max Mosley was ousted from office and unable to push through the required mandates.

All has been quite on the Gene Haas front recently, following a huge burst of publicity for the American owner entrepreneur earlier in the year. Haas F1 has been established and is licensed to race from 2016, however, much of the information released about how Haas plans to run his team appears predicated on a change in the rules for customer cars and commonly available shared components.

Further, the Haas name has appeared on the Ferrari cars as a sponsor towards the end of the season, and Gene is expecting to be able to use a Ferrari PU in 2016.

Yet the Ferrari people Haas had dealings with are now all gone, Domenicali, LdM and the Marco Mattiacci. So is Haas concerned about this.

When asked whether this was of any concern, Haas replied, “That’s a good point. I don’t know. I think that the higher ups know what they’re doing. I hope we didn’t have any influence over them losing their jobs.

It seems whoever I spoke to got fired. I better stop speaking to people,” quipped Haas. “There’s a lot of pressure on Ferrari. Ferrari is obviously a marquee car builder, and Formula 1 is their marquee racing series. And they want to win. There’s just a lot of pressure there. I have to respect that.”

Oh well, at least Gene has the support of another influential F1 figure who will ensure the promises made are kept. When asked about Bernie Ecclestone, Hass stated, “He’s an interesting character. They call him ‘El Supremo.’ That just says it all. When someone calls you ‘El Supremo,’ I guess you have to have a lot of respect for that.”

Ecclestone has spent 2014 fighting for his F1 career, and it appears his days a numbered – and not in treble digits. Having been forced to relinquish his directorships in the F1 Group of companies whilst he stood trial in Munich, CVC have not reinstated them since his ‘acquittal’ and are now about to appoint a heavy hitter no nonsense Paul Walsh as chairman – a man who is said to not suffer fools gladly.

It has happened before and it may be happening again. An individual of substance believes they have made unshakeable allegiances in F1, only to discover they picked the wrong side to get in to bed with – and are out in the cold.


29 responses to “#F1 Daily News and Comment: Saturday 6th December 2014

  1. I can only think of a few people who would hold any value to these trophies…

    Maybe Arrivabene took some advice from Flavio on how to cheer Seb up and welcome him to the ways of the Mafia? 😛

  2. “The offenders took items that not only did not belong to them, but which represented the efforts of a group of dedicated, hard-working individuals.”
    Everything before the comma does seem to be a textbook description of burglary, or the grab, following the description of the method of the smash.

    • Looking at the pictures of where Red Bull were ram raided, it appears they had little in the way of anti ram raiding measures in place. Williams is like Fort Knox compared to Red Bull.

      • Exactly – Horner’s comments about fans now having to suffer restricted access – once again reactionary nonsense.

        Spiceboy needs to nip down and see the US embassy in Grosvenor Square, London

        • I’m sure the Red Bull Factory Tours must cost a pretty penny, enough to fund to anti ram raid measures…

          I think Horner has been busy trying to come up with new ways to get a power train development war going, this ram raid must have put him off his stride….

          • The red bull factory tours are mostly free, generally to deserving people who are being treated to a good few hours by a company that enjoys showing people what they do. Red bull do not charge for factory tours, an if they did they certainly would not keep the money, it would go to their chosen charity, wings for life, and do you really think that money is any object when it comes to security barriers etc, red bull has always been an open place as fans love to come and stand outside, have their pictures taken, unfortunately that is all going to stop because of this ridiculous incident….. I find it totally baffling that you talk of tour fees and security barriers?? You really do not have any idea of the kind of money involved do you???

          • …and that is a fair comment. It is far easier for fans to get a tour in Milton Keynes than for example at the MTC or Grove – and for that Red Bull should be commended.

            Regardless of whether ram raid precautions are relatively inexpensive – or not – this is an act of criminal wickedness… and it is the culprits who should be vilified for their attack on F1 heritage.

          • I think the joke about Horner being too busy trying to start a power train development war whilst a ram raid was going on might have clued you into my post being sarcastic/satire. I’m well aware of wings for life, given it’s funded a few research projects into spinal injuries at Oxford University and many other places around the world.

            Red Bull will probably tighten security up, but they have got various options that won’t be too intrusive in the open approach they have to fans and other visitors. I’m sure Red Bull Technologies could probably come up with something innovative to prevent a future ram raid if they had the time.

            I would love to visit the Red Bull Factory, merely to compare it to Williams (which I’ve been fortunate enough to go around twice, in aid of Sir Frank Williams designated charities).

            I found this interesting in the car museum part of Williams (photography was banned in the actual factory)- https://www.flickr.com/photos/8076308@N06/4039589691/

  3. Regarding the NFL, (not a fan, I had to look this up) there are 30 teams, in 30 cities around the country. Many of those have stadiums built by the cities they play in, and are in major metropolitan areas. (Green Bay, Wisconsin, is not in a major or minor metro.) They have built in fan bases, and about half have been around for 60 years or more.

    • They also have salary caps and income sharing which allows small market teams like Green Bay to not only survive but compete.

  4. “It seems whoever I spoke to got fired”…quipped Haas. Landroni, do you see the pattern. LOL

  5. Re- Haas F1
    I always thought they were banking in heavy changes in regulations on what a teams MUST manufacture in house to qualify as a constructor, as the guy seemed almost too calm. Perhaps he is having to do a little fire fighting of his own and is having to adjust his approach dramatically. At least they chose 2016 and not 2015 to join in. I really would like to see a start up team do well. It’s been too long since the boat was well and truly rocked!

    • I agree wholeheartedly… but I just don’t see Haas as the man to do it. And I have never accepted his claim that he couldn’t get it together for 2015… It has always looked like a publicity stunt to me… and my suggestion months ago that he might be better off (by far) simply sponsoring Sauber (for example) might now be marked by his small support of Ferrari…
      I still don’t expect to see a Haas on the grid in 2016, or ever, but if he makes it I wish him luck.

      • It will be interesting to see what happens. He has a great facility in North Carolina but he ran about mid pack, in NASCAR, for his first 6 or 7 years (started in 2002). It wasn’t until he teamed up with Tony Stewart in 2008 that they started to get some decent results. 2009 they started to win with Stewart driving and were very competitive. Then they won the championship in 2011.

        I certainly don’t expect them to be winning in F1 anytime soon but I do believe, if they make it to the grid, they will do a better job then the recent newbies.

      • Re: Haas 2016 & not 2015.

        Many of the people he would like to hire, are likely to be on minimum six months notice periods for their contracts.

  6. Looking at the Mercedes trophy picture I noticed that 3 team trophies are on the wrong side. And 1 is, very telling, missing.

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