Honda F1 website

DECEMBER 10, 2004

A chance for French racing?

The French Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin has announced that he intends to relax the country's employment laws which restrict working to 35 hours a week. This was voted in by the socialist government back in 1999 and has been constantly attacked ever since by big business which argues that France cannot be competitive on the international scene with such laws. Since the introduction of the 35 hour week all French involvement in Formula 1, except for the government-backed Renault F1 engine programme, has disappeared and all of Renault's chassis activity is carried out in England by an English workforce. Relaxing the law may help other teams move up the ladder but with the costs being as they are in F1 at the moment, it is unlikely that any will break into Grand Prix racing without a fundamental change of engine costs and the introduction of other cost-cutting measures.