APRIL 26, 2002
Crisis? What crisis?
UP and down the Formula 1 paddock in Barcelona the talk on Friday was whether or not Formula 1 is facing a funding crisis - or whether the pleas of struggling teams are not indicative of the industry as a whole. The general opinion appears to be that most of the teams are not in any danger at all because of the support of the automobile manufacturers and that the sport can survive the loss of as many as three teams without too much drama. If things get worse than that there would be a number of things that the teams could do to keep up the numbers without increasing costs dramatically. The obvious solution if the numbers were to dwindle too much would be to allow the teams to run their third cars in races.
This would not greatly increase costs as the cars are being taken the races anyway and with the new one engine per race weekend rule coming in the pressure will on to avoid switching to the spare as rarely as possible.
It also offers the possibility of allowing more drivers to be involved which would help the promotion of the sport in countries which currently do not have active F1 drivers.