Voice of the F1 Fans: Ferrari’s new Blingmobile Part 6 – When the lunatics are running the asylum

Brought to you by TheJudge13 contributor landroni

This series of articles looks in some length at the latest futuristic design proposed by Ferrari and some of the issues surrounding it and F1 more generally. Part V discussed the underlying problem. Part VI looks into who is running the asylum… 

I guess the notion of cost-cutting is synonymous to even more glitz and bling for the Strategy Group types: as if the current monster engines weren’t enough, they now want to develop newer, bigger, and monstrier engines… that would funnily output roughly the same amount of HP as the current Power Units. To hell with small teams and assorted stakeholders!

Small independent teams have been dealt with strangely in recent years, all it seems in the normative name of squeezing in the short-term the sport’s long-term value on behalf of CVC. These teams have been ostensibly starved to the point where we witness eye-opening “dog eats dog” incidents and delightful “how to fit 3 in 2” charades, yet the girthy and pampered propose even more ludicrous cost-inflating measures.

The Capitol pampered from Hunger Games spring to mind, with the disenfranchised Sauber’s and the Force India’s playing the role of District 12. While HRT, Caterham and Marussia seemingly playing the role of District 13…

Welcome to the F1 Hunger Games! And may the odds be never in your favor…

Your humble correspondent was genuinely hoping for more common sense coming from Mr Marchionne, a serious businessman understanding the needs of a business model and the interest of its survival. In any case, I was expecting incredibly more common sense than from LdM, and I was prostrated at the news of Marco Mattiacci’s summary execution. Yet, here cometh Marlboro Man and the monstrosity that shall henceforth forever be known as the Ferrari Blingmobile.

Thankfully, though, it seems that the lunatics running the asylum have somehow, miraculously taken their pills before voting some months ago on an unspecified set of proposals for 2016, and rejected them wholesale. Since the Strategy Group is effectively the regulating body of F1 nowadays, with the FIA merrily relinquishing the privilege for a few extra dollars (now having only 1/3 of a say on crucial matters in the Strategy Group, while interestingly the sport’s Commercial Rights Holder holds just as much regulatory say with the other 1/3 of the votes), it is surprising that none of the underlying process is truly public knowledge. It would be so much fun to see the exact issues being proposed, the submitter, the exact voting outcome, and the positions of each voter being made public. Wasn’t the FIA required to submit its procedures to public scrutiny, in the name of transparency? Hmm…

So the very month that we witness an episode of cannibalism, with FI doing all they can to get a share of Marussia’s blood transfusion allocation, we see that the SG is more concerned with how to avoid astronomical cost increases… instead of how to achieve cost reductions. And no one should be surprised by such “dog eat dog” episodes: between those in intensive care, some under CPR (Caterham and Manor), surely those starved but breathing (FI, Sauber, Lotus) will be looking to wrestle all that tasty looking transfusion blood…

And Monsieur Todt once again showcased his regulatory impotence, as eloquently put by the small teams in an open letter late last year, by yet again failing to regulate… He kindly asked the manufacturers to cap engine costs to 5m, to which only the sound of wind was to be heard. And a couple of crickets.

todt - 1339691703

The face of impotence

Problems… What problems?

So what’s wrong with the current cars, you ask? Not much, really. Red Bull managed to wow unexpecting audiences, though not TJ13 types, with the ironically photogenic zebra camouflage. Merc’s front wing has been imperious for two years running, as was Red Bull’s from last year. McLaren’s latest creation has the sex-appeal of a thoroughly redone cougar, even if its Honda rear so far resembles more like a pooping-machine than a proper engine ready to take on the almighty Merc.

Sure, some designs like last year’s omnipresent… members (e.g. Williams), or this year’s cold shrunken ones (still Williams) may be an affront to many people’s senses, but responsibility for this lies right at the top with Todt and the SG: senior engineers know how the cars will look like the moment they get out of the voting booth, so they really should’ve known better…

Now that’s one quick, mean, nice looking car!

Given all the deafening noises coming from some corners right now, F1 types should seriously consider renting the services of the legendary designer from Springfield to come up with a suitable spec chassis for F1. Maybe they should put gramophones on top of the car? But you know, if people crave for so much noise, perhaps more appropriate for them would be to go witness the launches of space shuttles. I hear Ariane has several launches a year, and Kazakhstan seems to be a prolific destination. Would that be loud enough for ye, Bernie?

Ultimately, my recommendation to Marchionne and Marlboro Man (who said anything about the M&M’s being dead?) would be to recruit Homer Simpson for the job of imposing the perfect F1 vision of the future. The engineer from Springfield clearly has a knack for this:


Disclaimer: TheJudge13 provides a platform for Formula 1 fans to publish their voice on matters relating to Formula 1. The views expressed in Voice of #F1 Fans are those of the contributor and not those held by TJ13.

9 responses to “Voice of the F1 Fans: Ferrari’s new Blingmobile Part 6 – When the lunatics are running the asylum

  1. Yep..seen a shuttle launch and…..wow…but would still like my old v12 or v10 to be a feature of the race, I stand in the crowd and love the smell of castrol R while having the wind knocked from my lungs by the thunder of 20 cars racing at full tilt. I for one don’t like the whistle or even this yrs fake increase in DB, I might me a dinosaur but as the saying goes..’there ain’t no replacement for displacement’

    • That statement is kind of true, although with the technology engine manufacturers are able to bring to bear now they’ve managed to circumvent it to some extent. Irrespective of the noise they make, the performance of the current ‘power units’ is pretty incredible (especially when you bear in mind how efficient they are, although that’s not quite as glamorous…). Same goes for the huge power outputs from the relatively small engines some of the WEC teams use.

  2. meanwhile, in other news…

    yesterday was Roland Ratzenberger +21years
    today is Ayrton Senna +21years

    all this nonsense is irrelevant in comparison to that weekend, and not a mention on here


    • There’s no DNAC, although I thought it became a BiDNAC. I guess that could be a place for it.

      But to be honest, it isn’t like a war which needs to be remembered every year. I think this site does more for F1 safety by digging into Jules’ accident.

      • TJ13 is constantly on the lookout for new writers of daily news. Those who feel something is sorely missing, feel free to shoot on the event/subject you’d like to cover…

        • I tought of putting in a disclaimer:
          “I know this site is run by volunteers and I appreciate it very much.”

          Maybe I get a good idea for a good hook for an article some day. But I think I stick to random comments.

          • For daily news the barrier of entry can be very low indeed. Sometimes it may suffice to stick 2-3 phrases around a press release, and pass it to the editor… Feel free to join the fun at any time!

    • Agreed – this series is a new low for J13. Not enjoying the site’s focus on opinions vs facts lately. Or the redesign.

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