OCTOBER 20, 2007
Will the Force be with us?
Vijay Mallya, the new owner of Spyker F1, says that he wants to call the team Force India F1. The cars will be known as Force Indias. The problem is that in order for the name change to happen all the teams must agree and this means there is likely to be some opposition because of the ongoing legal battles between Spyker F1 and Super Aguri and Toro Rosso.
Mallya says that it is in the best interest of the sport for the the name to be changed to have the maximum possible impact for F1 in India - a fair point - but whether this will happen in the sometimes twisted world of F1 remains to be seen. Mallya is also playing an important role in trying to sort out the details of an Indian Grand Prix. He is already head of both the competing motor sport federations of India, one which is backed by the Indian government and the other one which has the support of the FIA. The FIA is now in the process of forcing the two to merge so that theer are no longer any disputes and the FIA's Alan Donnelly has been appointed to make sure that this happens by the end of December.
Mallya says he is not intending to make many immediate changes in the team but has put a United Breweries executive into Spyker to look after the finance. He is T.V. Lakshmi Kanthan, who has been with UB for 23 years in various capacities and is currently serving as Finance Director in the UK.