Brought to you by TheJudge13 contributor Tyre Warmer
Rapacious capitalists only concerned with their own enrichment, dwindling public participation, rising inequality, corrupt leadership, a wilful disregard of the real nature of problems to protect the incumbents, and a rotten sense of decline. These days Formula One is pretty much a perfect reflection of the global economy as whole!
The news coming out of F1’s strategy group meeting confirms that there is an amazing refusal to engage with the salient issues. Just as we see European politicians desperately trying to ignore the fact that Greece is entirely broke by rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic-esque Eurozone, the burghers of F1 grasp at regulatory straws.
While the world’s central bankers seem genuinely surprised that simply enriching the top one percent doesn’t do much for everyone else, the pinnacle of motorsport wants to have a crack at some quantitative easing of its own: will 1,000bhp be enough, how about 2,000 just to be sure?
The comic book render Ferrari produced of a possible future F1 car at the beginning of the year encapsulated this sorry state of affairs perfectly by being laughably irrelevant to the sport’s woes.
Having cars that look like something from the Bat Cave re-sprayed will do nothing if drivers can’t overtake each other, races are too expensive for people to attend, crippling unfairness in the distribution of money blights competition, and the beguiling history of the sport is jettisoned for a short term monetary fixes.
The latest non-solution is customer cars.
While the details are scant on exactly how things will work, the Spanish Grand Prix suggests a Mercedes customer car would have a fair chance of beating the works Ferrari. In MotoGP it’s not unusual to see the satellite bikes usurping the factory teams but if that started to happen in F1 it would really cause a stink.
Imagine Dr. Helmut Marko’s rage if his edgy-energy-drink-mobile was beaten by a customer Merc sponsored by Horlicks! Worse still, imagine if you had paid millions for a version of this year’s McHonda, you’d be asking for your money back!
There are considerable doubts any thought has been put into the ramifications of customer cars. It is just a desperate attempt to keep the private equity vultures happy and control the sport through an oligarchy of teams with FOM revenue streams acting as puppeteer’s strings.
No doubt it will get worse.
The grasping nature if those in charge means that free-to-air Grand Prix will eventually disappear altogether. The consequent decline in eyeballs and thus sponsorship cash means even more power for the commercial rights holders. They will pick the winners and F1 will cease to be sport, becoming instead a brightly coloured ‘crony capitalist’ procession. F1 will go the way of boxing and disappear up its own over-financialised backside.
F1 fans desperately need Bernie to inject some meritocracy back into the sport before he departs us to the big super-yacht in the sky. Unfortunately that doesn’t look very likely at present.
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.