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Force Strulovitch 2018

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#31 alberto.ascari

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Posted 30 July 2018 - 15:54

Tobi Grüner AMuS:

In order to keep their performance prize money bonus after a takeover by new owners Force India needs agreement by all other teams. But McLaren, Williams & Renault denied that approval and put the rescue at risk.

Ako je ovo tačno onda su stvarno megakurtoni.
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#32 Rad-oh-yeah?

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 15:18

Administration and F1 politics
There is a lot of chatter online today about teams needing to agree to allow Force India back into Formula 1, with all the rights and benefits remaining in place, after the administration process in completed. This is not necessarily what will happen because it pre-supposes that the team has been insolvent, under the definition of insolvency used by in the Formula 1 commercial agreements. This has often confused reporting in the past (including my own), but going into administration does not mean that an F1 team is insolvent.

Force India did face a winding up petition before the administration began and it is clear that one led to the other, but importantly, the winding up petition hearing was adjourned and no winding-up order was granted. Administration itself is not deemed to be an "insolvency event" in the F1 commercial agreements and it protects the company from the creditors. The prize money is only affected if the company that signed the commercial agreements (in this case Force India Formula One Team Ltd - with the company number 02417588) is involved with an “insolvency event".

If that happens the commercial contract with the Formula One Group is automatically cancelled. The administration petition that went in from Sergio Perez was not about getting the money owed to him, but was more to do with protecting the company so that it will pay him at a later date. Perez wrote to the staff explaining that his action was intended to save the team, and this is a credible explanation. Perez said that his intention was "to save the jobs of more than 400 team-mates" and explained that he was asked to file an administration petition (although he did not say by whom) to stop the team being wound up. "The judge agreed with our petition," Perez wrote. "Thanks to support from Mercedes and BWT".  This preserves the rights and benefits of the team, the key being to keep the same company alive - and to avoid a so-called “insolvency event”.

Administration is a rescue procedure that includes the rescue of the company itself, so if that can be achieved then existing agreements should all remain in place and there is no need for any political dimension.

The key hurdle is that the administrator has to be convinced as to the merits and certainty of any rescue proposals, but this does not require consent of the other teams, unless they are creditors of Force India. This is true of Mercedes, but then again we don’t know if Force India’s debt is with the Mercedes racing team company or with a different Mercedes subsidiary, or perhaps with more than one entities.

Thus all the talk of votes and team agreements may not be necessary. We will see. One key hurdle is the salaries of the team, due in recent days. The word is that these have been paid with money loaned by someone (rumours suggest it was Lawrence Stroll). It is unlikely that he will buy the team because it doesn’t do Lance much good to be racing for a team owned by his father, but Stroll could make convertible loans to Force India and then sell the shares that these will bring when a new owner is selected by the administrator.

In the interim, the terms of these loans might include a clause that would allow Lance to race for Force India, filling the space that may become available as Esteban Ocon goes to Renault, and opening up a Williams drive for either Robert Kubica, or more likely George Russell, as he will likely be supported by Mercedes offering Williams a deal on engine and transmission for next season.

Vijay Mallya did write to the team saying that he is still in charge and is also the biggest creditor, through the Orange India holding company in Luxembourg, saying that the team owes the holding company $208 million. Neither claim seems to be true. In administration, the company is run by the administrator, not by the previous directors; and if one looks at the Force India accounts the money that Mallya appears to be talking about is the company's capital reserve. This is money that cannot be legally be used to pay shareholders.

We hear that the actual debts of Force India Formula One Team Ltd are $43 million.

A court in London has postponed its final hearing in the extradition case against Vijay Mallya until September 12. The judge wants evidence that conditions in the jail in India in which Mallya would be held pending his trial, will be sufficiently comfortable.

Mallya is currently stuck in the UK after the Indians cancelled his passport. They want him back in India to face a string of different charges relating to his business activities.

With Force India now in administration, Mallya’s involvement in F1 is effectively over and so I’m not intending to report further on the blow by blow of his legal situation.

Edited by Rad-oh-yeah?, 01 August 2018 - 15:20.

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#33 leone

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Posted 01 August 2018 - 23:55

Njesu samo finansije u pitanju, po obicaju, politika i uticaj su se tu upleli;


  Force India: F1 power struggle over team's future

By Andrew Benson

Chief F1 writer



The story of the collapse of Force India into administration and the search for a rescuer to take over the team just got a lot more complicated.

It's already difficult enough to find a buyer for a Formula 1 team, especially if - as in Force India's case - they have debts of many millions of pounds. But now it has become political.

In a nutshell, three of Formula 1's biggest names - McLaren, Renault and Williams - are asking for reassurances before they agree to conditions that would help a sale. 

They are not against the team being bought by new owners - indeed they want it to survive. But they have concerns that by doing so it may become a satellite of a manufacturer - in this case Mercedes - in all but name.

That, they feel, threatens not only their businesses on an existential level, but also the healthy future of the sport itself.

What is their problem?

These teams - some of the most successful and well-known competitors in the history of F1 - fear that there is an effort to create a Mercedes B team - and that that would mean not only further strengthening the political and sporting power of the German giant and their off-track ally Ferrari, but also that it has serious ramifications on a much wider level.

McLaren, Renault and Williams feel this would be a further step towards entrenching F1 as a two-tier sport, and make it impossible for independent teams such as McLaren and Williams to compete, and possibly even to exist.

Even Renault, a manufacturer team themselves, are worried the model by which they run their team would become unsustainable.

Mercedes say they share these concerns. Team boss Toto Wolff told BBC Sport: "We don't like the concept of B teams in Formula 1. We'd rather not have this structure because it provides advantages to both teams - and competitive advantages, you could argue. We are not buying Force India and we would rather not have the concept of a B team."

But the stand-off remains.

Why the concerns?

Many viewers of F1 will have noticed the leap in competitiveness this year of Haas and Sauber. 

Haas are the smallest team on the grid, and yet they consistently have the fourth fastest car. Sauber were two seconds off the back of the grid last year, but this year their promising new driver Charles Leclerc has regularly qualified in the top 10, and even journeyman Marcus Ericsson is regularly threatening a McLaren driven by two-time world champion Fernando Alonso.

McLaren and Williams have their own problems, and freely admit they need to fix them. But they perceive the rise of Haas and Sauber to be the result of the close links and shared resources between both teams and Ferrari - and believe Ferrari are benefiting as well. 

McLaren and Williams are worried that, if the model is allowed to perpetuate itself, independent teams will effectively no longer be able to compete. Renault say it could even make them reconsider their involvement in F1.

Renault Sport F1 boss Cyril Abiteboul told BBC Sport he was "not criticising" Haas, who he says are simply making the most of what is allowed under the F1 rules, but added: "That's not the type of F1 we like. We are a little bit afraid that such a construction would make it impossible for anyone who is not enjoying the benefit of a master team or slave team to be competitive at their own level.

"We start to see some glimpses of that today in certain aspects of the grid or the development of the chassis or engine. We need to make sure it does not become a necessity, otherwise our model does not work and our involvement can't be sustainable."

Wolff says: "I understand there are questions from Cyril and others over what is the future of F1 if big teams buy smaller teams, which I completely respect. I completely share those thoughts and I don't think it is the right way forward.

"I hope we can find a discussion so the scope of co-operation is narrowed down between teams. There are commercial arrangements that make sense, but there are downsides to it. And that is the competitive order can change. 

"So we need to find a solution to how the small teams can benefit from shared infrastructure but at the same time not gain an advantage that is currently possible."

McLaren and Williams declined to comment.

It's about power and politics as well as sport

The background to this is political as much as it is sporting. 

F1 is engaged in discussions over the future shape of the sport post-2020. The car manufacturers already appear to have won a battle over the engine regulations, fighting off an attempt to make significant changes to the current turbo hybrid engines.

The privateers are concerned that if the 'wrong' people - in their eyes - get their hands on Force India, it would enhance Mercedes' power.

This would be not only when it comes to debate over issues such as rule changes, because it would be another team guaranteed to vote in Mercedes' direction. It could also influence aspects of the driver market. 

And even the racing could be affected. If, for example, a Mercedes found itself up behind a car from a Mercedes B team in a race - would the 'B' fight, or simply wave the Mercedes through? Some believe this already happened in Monaco this year, with Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes-contracted Esteban Ocon. 

But it's not just about Mercedes. Ferrari, Haas and Sauber have been a similar concern for some time, as have Red Bull and junior team Toro Rosso.

Who and what are they concerned about most?

There are believed to be five potential buyers for Force India, with the leading contender said to be Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll, whose son Lance drives for Williams. 

This is the bid McLaren/Renault/Williams are most concerned about in terms of the "slave team" scenario.

Other interested parties are

  • An American consortium involving Indycar team owner Michael Andretti and Pieter Rossi, the father of former F1 driver Alexander Rossi, who now races for Andretti
  • A second US consortium involving Jeff Moorad, the former boss of the Arizona Diamondbacks and San Diego Padres baseball teams, who now runs a sports investment-management company
  • Russian billionaire Dmitry Mazepin, whose son Nikita races in GP3 and is Force India's development driver
  • Soft drink company Rich Energy, said to have West Ham owners David Sullivan and David Gold behind it. Rich Energy had a bid to save the team from administration with a £30m sponsorship deal rejected by the judge on Friday on the basis that it did not provide enough finance for the team going forward

Abiteboul says Renault are "extremely sensitive" to the perils of the situation, pointing out that they rescued the former Lotus team from going into administration at the end of 2015. And all three parties are understood to want a sale to take place - but not without guarantees.

Mercedes are Force India's largest external creditor. But Wolff says he can have no influence over who buys the team.

"We have held discussions with every potential buyer to my knowledge and the most important (thing) is someone with the right funds buys the team," he says. "But we are not orchestrating it. It is in the hands of the administrator. 

"It needs to be the best outcome for the creditors of the team and that is to sell for the best financial outcome."

What are the three doing about it?

Force India are appealing to a potential buyer because they finished fourth in the championship last year and are arguably the best pound-for-pound team in F1, on the basis of what they have achieved considering their resources.

But, as such, they are also entitled to large amounts of prize money and powerful voting rights - both of which are attractive to a new owner.

However, a buyer will only get these if the transfer of ownership is approved by all the other teams. If not, they are effectively starting from scratch without the benefits, and buying only Force India's 400 staff and assets.

Abiteboul says his concerns do not centre on Mercedes per se, or Force India in isolation; indeed, he says he understands Wolff's position.

"I am not sure Toto is convinced that it is a good thing for F1 to go in this direction," says the Frenchman, who has an alliance with Mercedes on engines and other political issues in F1. "I think it is something he is pushed into looking at. 

"I am not saying he is doing it, because I don't know what is in his mind, and I am not privy to the discussions he is having with the Force India administrators and buyers. 

"But I am pretty sure that the way he is looking into it, he is seeing it is probably working for Ferrari and therefore (Mercedes) probably needs to mimic what they are doing. So I understand his position."

Abiteboul says his question is a big-picture one to Liberty Media, the US company that took over F1 last year, and governing body the FIA; it's just that the "Force India situation is linked in a certain way".

"We will make sure that no job is under any threat," Abiteboul says. "That is very certain. But we just want to understand the vision of the commercial rights holder in that respect.

"The only thing where we want to have a little bit of clarity is we understand that there are right now a number of incentives for large and smaller teams to get together and take advantage either of the current regulations or future regulations."

Would Renault veto the transfer of rights, naming and prize money in any sale of Force India if they had concerns about the new ownership effectively trying to form a partnership with Mercedes?


"The answer is no, because we want to save the jobs," Abiteboul says. "But we want to have the reassurance required before we have to vote that this will not be the case."




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#34 Rad-oh-yeah?

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Posted 02 August 2018 - 12:59

2 August 2018
The F1 definition of insolvent and why it matters


Formula 1 is a strange, often other-worldly, activity. By some rules do still apply. There is a thing called the law and very few people manage to get around that successfully. Those who do are rarely in the newspapers.

You can read elsewhere about a number of Formula 1 teams saying they won’t agree to allow Force India to have prize money after its period of administration. You might think why would they even have a say? So it seems wise to walk through the process and to explain the different possibilities.

The first thing is to decide whether or not Force India has ever been insolvent, under the law. This is defined by the Insolvency Act of 1986, in which Article 123 covers the definition of insolvency and the process that exists to get there. In order to file a winding-up petition, a creditor must have evidence of what is called a Statutory Demand for money. The company has 21 days to pay. If this is not done, then the company is deemed to be insolvent and the creditor can then apply for a winding-up petition to get the money by the sale of assets after the company is closed down. Thus a winding-up petition is a pretty good indication that a company is (or was) insolvent, during the 21 days given to pay a Statutory Demand.

Now the problem with F1 comes because of the commercial agreements that exist between the rights holder (the Formula One group) and the individual teams. These bilateral agreements are all different, but when it comes to insolvency, they all refer back the Concorde Agreement of 2009, in which is defined what happens if a team runs out of money. The Concorde Agreement uses Article 123 of the Insolvency Act as one of the ways of defining a "Cessation Event". Thus, it is safe to assume that a winding-up petition, whether granted or not, is a Cessation Event. In the past we have seen teams go into administration and emerge without the other teams having a say, but in these cases there were never any winding-up petitions because the teams satisfied all Statutory Demands within the 21 days allowed and were thus never technically (or officially) insolvent. Given that Force India had a winding-up petition documented in the public domain, it must therefore have had an unsatisfied Statutory Demand (or perhaps more than one).

So what does this all mean? If a team has gone through a Cessation Event its rights and benefits as defined in the commercial agreements are automatically cancelled. This means that the team is no longer entitled to any of the prize fund. And in order to be allowed to regain its position, all the other signatories of the commercial agreements must agree to allow this to happen. Teams generally don't look beyond the end of their own noses. If a team disappears, that means more money for the others. However it would be foolish indeed for the greed of a team to destroy what is essentially a strong and competitive operation, however poorly it has been run by the previous owners, and so there will inevitably be pressure on the signatory teams from the Commercial Rights Holder to sign, in the best interests of the sport. Of course, teams will try to use this situation to try to win concessions, but ultimately all will sign - unless they wish to be publicly flayed (deservedly) for destroying a strong team and weakening the sport.

The rights and benefits are valuable (being worth, let's say, $70 million a year) and so to continue with a team without such rights means that a buyer will have to pay more. A new entity (as Haas was) will become eligible for different prize funds as it goes along but it will take three years to return to the same status as the other teams, and that will have meant a loss of at least $100 million, depending on their results. Having said that, if the new owner has very deep pockets then this is a good way to be clear of any nasty surprises that the old company might have. Given that acquiring Force India will be a relatively cheap operation with only $43 million in debt (compared to the $250 million which the owners were trying to get in the sale), some might consider it wiser to get the team without prize money and get on with building it up. However, there is little doubt that not having prize money will drive away some potential buyers.

The next thing to watch for will be next week when the administrator must make a decision about the staff. Fourteen days after the administration begins, the administrator must decide whether to retain the employees. That decision will largely depend on whether the administrator thinks a rescue is viable.

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#35 Rad-oh-yeah?

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Posted 02 August 2018 - 22:55

Is Force India on the brink?


By: Chris Medland | 2 hours ago

Force India has been one of the success stories of Formula 1 over the past decade.

During the period when Jordan became Spyker became Midland, its championship finishes read: ninth, ninth, ninth, 10th, 10th.

Then came Vijay Mallya and the team’s rebranding as Force India, and the first two years again yielded a 10th and a ninth. But the second of those two results came under new regulations in 2009, and marked the start of a climb up the field.

Only once has Force India failed to at least match its previous year’s performance in its entire history, slipping from sixth in 2011 to seventh a year later despite scoring an extra 40 points.

It’s a remarkable achievement for a team of that size. Force India has been consistently maximizing its potential as defined by its budget, and the results have been mightily impressive. That it has still been competitive in a midfield featuring Renault, McLaren and an extremely strong Haas this season, all while facing increasingly difficult financial circumstances, is outstanding.

But this past week brought a dramatic intervention that appears to threaten the team’s very existence. The name Force India Formula One Team Ltd appeared on the Companies Court Winding Up List last Wednesday, and by Friday night the team was in administration.

And yet this week Latifi was racking up the miles in the VJM11 at the Hungaroring as the race and test team went about business as usual.

It’s a bizarre situation that is worrying for all involved – ‘administration’ is not a word anybody wants to hear regarding their employer – but there appears to be light at the end of ta tunnel that Force India effectively put itself in.

Team owner Vijay Mallya has been facing extradition to India on fraud charges, with his ongoing financial concerns leaving a cloud over the team. Fresh investment has been mooted for a while, but the claims from UK-based drinks firm Rich Energy about an imminent takeover earlier this year were always taken with a pinch of salt.

According to its latest accounts, Rich Energy has total current assets of just £1million ($1.3m), which doesn’t suggest it has the capital to purchase and run a Formula 1 team. Last Friday the company claimed that “despite a last minute £30m cash injection from Rich Energy the court has today put Force India into administration. A tragic and avoidable outcome orchestrated by Mercedes AMG F1, Sergio Perez, Julian Jakobi and BWT. Disgraceful.”

That comment was tweeted, accompanied by a photo of the front page of what appeared to be a sponsorship agreement between Force India and Rich Energy dated 27 July 2018. A sponsorship agreements go, £30m ($39.4m) would be a major commitment. For comparison, the Martini title partnership deal with Williams is reported to be worth around the $15m-per-year mark.

It appears that many within Force India did not see a positive end in sight with the team in its current guise; a one-off injection merely delaying the inevitable further struggles down the road. So Sergio Perez triggered legal action that put the team in administration. And that’s what’s unusual about this situation.

Image by Bloxham/LAT

A current driver putting his own team into administration sounds like suicide. But Perez insists it was the best move for the team’s long-term health.

“The thing is, there was a winding up petition from another customer, which would have closed down the team completely,” Perez explained. “Therefore I was asked to save the team, to pull the trigger and put the team into administration. It was nothing to do with my outstanding amounts. The only reason I have done it was to save the team and for the better future for the team.

“It was not only me. The reason behind that was not to screw up the team. It was to save the team. It’s much more complicated. I don’t really understand all the terms with lawyers and so on, but certainly, the bottom line of this is we either do this or the team will have gone bust. It’s what I got from the lawyers and from members of the team.”

The joint administrators are FRP Advisory, who have experience of working with F1 teams, having dealt with Manor when it went into administration ahead of the 2017 season. FRP Advisory say the aim “is for business as usual” while options are assessed, and the team is certainly continuing in that vein.

On Tuesday in Budapest, Force India was one of two teams – Williams being the other – running a 2019-specification front wing as part of next year’s car development. The change is a significant one in terms of aerodynamic impact on the rest of the car, and so the data gathered at the Hungaroring will help shape the new design.

An image I posted of the Force India on track drew a Twitter response saying they thought the team “would be gone” after last weekend’s race, having gone into administration. Not so, with the team carrying out a full testing program, and the drivers being used hinting at the confidence with which it is looking to the future.

Latifi has become more closely involved with the team this season. The Canadian’s father is a 10 percent shareholder in the McLaren Group after buying a stake worth $270m, showing there is serious financial clout behind the name and an interest to invest it within F1.

While it seems Latifi’s money is already tied up at McLaren, there’s even more cash behind Nikita Mazepin, who took over the cockpit on Wednesday. The young Russian’s father Dmitry is worth an estimated $7bn as chairman of Uralchem.

A third driver’s father has also been linked with investment at Force India, with Lawrence Stroll potentially looking at moving across from Williams after an underwhelming year for the team so far. And they are just the more obvious names being leaked.

Mercedes is watching on as a creditor that was involved in the administration proceedings, and Toto Wolff spoke confidently about Force India’s future last weekend.

“I think, first of all, credit must be given to Vijay for 10 years or so of funding the team and having been not only a shareholder, the key shareholder of the team, but also having had the enthusiasm to support the team and fund it,” Wolff said. “Obviously things have turned more difficult for him in the past, and that has had an affect on the team Force India.

“Now that process has been kicked off by an administrator, there are many potential buyers with a great interest, with deep pockets, with an understanding of what kind of spending levels are needed in order to perform in Formula 1.

“It’s something that is positive for the team, and for all its employees I would say. As much as we have to recognize Vijay’s effort the last 10 years into the team, we shouldn’t forget that.”

Administrators will now work out which is the best future path for Force India, but unlike recent cases of teams entering administration, there are numerous parties with both the desire and the means to get involved.

With the team sitting sixth in the constructors’ championship – 23 points adrift of fourth-placed Renault – the Force India success story might not be over yet.

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#36 alberto.ascari

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Posted 07 August 2018 - 19:01

Stroll pazario.

Sad napisao Autosport.
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#37 Rad-oh-yeah?

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Posted 07 August 2018 - 19:29

Stroll deal to bring Force India out of administration
2018 F1 season
7th August 2018, 19:23
Keith Collantine

The Force India team is to be rescued from administration following the announcement of an investment package involving Lawrence Stroll, father of Williams driver Lance Stroll.

Administrators FRP announced on Tuesday that all 405 jobs at the team will be saved. The team went into administration 11 days ago during the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend.

A deal to save the team has been agreed between the joint administrators, senior members of the team’s management and a group of investors led by Stroll. The latter includes Stroll’s business partner Silas Chou, Canadian entrepreneur Andre Desmarais, Jonathan Dudman of Monaco Sports and Management, fashion business leader John Idol, telecommunications investor John McCaw Jnr and financial expert Michael de Picciotto.

Force India’s chief operating officer Otmar Szafnauer said: “This outcome secures the future of the Force India team in Formula 1 and will allow our team of racers to compete to our full potential.

“I am delighted that we have the support of a consortium of investors who believe in us as a team and who see the considerable business potential that Force India has within F1 now and in the future.”

Joint administrator Geoff Rowley said “it is rare that a company can be rescued and returned to a position of solvency.”

“The quality of the various interested parties has been impressive and required careful consideration as the administration has progressed. Having followed a robust process, in the end we were left with a highly-credible offer to save the company and restore solvency.

“All creditors will be paid in full, all jobs will be preserved, and the team will have significant funding to invest in its future.

“Funding to support the team will be made available from today, and significantly more will be available once the company emerges from administration which we expect within the next two to three weeks.”

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#38 alberto.ascari

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Posted 07 August 2018 - 20:34

Ovo je šansa za Kubicu da sedne u Williams.
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#39 alpiner

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Posted 08 August 2018 - 00:31

Teško. Dolaskom Strolla leti Peres ili Ocon iz FI. Prvi ima Carlosa Slima kao sponzora, znači pare, a drugi Mercedes kao podršku. Baš ono što Williamsu treba


Plus Sainz koji ne misli da je najbolja ideja izaći na crtu Alonsu u McLarenu.


Možda i lovator Ericsson popije nogu iz Saubera...

Edited by alpiner, 08 August 2018 - 23:29.

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#40 Hertzog

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Posted 08 August 2018 - 09:43

Al ce biti mesanja karata

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#41 alberto.ascari

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Posted 08 August 2018 - 11:37

Ericsson dao interview kako ove godine vozi kao nikad do sada. Ja mislim da ovo oko FI nije pretnja za njega. Njega će da otera Ferrari, ako će već neko.

Inače, što kaže Alpiner, šteta ali teško da će biti mesta za Kubicu. U FI Stroll i Checo, u Williams Ocon i Rus. Robert nema sponzora.
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#42 alpiner

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 21:25

Perez kaže da je pitanje nedelje kada će produžiti ugovor.

Znači Ocon slobodan..

Edited by alpiner, 19 August 2018 - 21:25.

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#43 alberto.ascari

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 21:58

Perez kaže da je pitanje nedelje kada će produžiti ugovor.Znači Ocon slobodan..

Znači u Williams.

Ogromna šteta, završiće kao Stoffel.
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#44 /13/Ален Шмит/

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Posted 22 August 2018 - 19:09

Sahara Fors Indija F1 Team je sada postala Fors Indija F1 Tim. Tim je prekinuo saradnju sa Saharom. Kamioni Fors Indije su oguljeni što možda nagoveštava novo ime tima.









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#45 Rad-oh-yeah?

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Posted 23 August 2018 - 15:46

Forsovo ucesce na Spa pod znakom pitanja:

Urgent attempts are being made to permit Force India to enter this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix despite the team’s ongoing legal problems.

RaceFans revealed yesterday the team’s participation in the race is in doubt following the sale of its assets to a consortium led by Lawrence Stroll. Complications in the team’s legal situation have prevented Stroll from purchasing its entry.

The team is in negotiations to find a solution which will allow it to compete in this weekend’s race. As a short-term measure it could compete under its original entrant title, Sahara Force India F1 Team. If necessary, similar concessions could be put in place for next week’s Italian Grand Prix.

According to well-placed sources, once all issues are resolved the Silverstone-based team could be permitted to enter as a new entity starting from scratch. However, this would mean a resultant loss of all points and benefits accrued in the 2018 FIA Formula 1 constructors’ championship thus far.

This would have further knock-on financial consequences over the next two years as teams are required to score in two of three championship seasons in order to qualify for the full range of commercial benefits.

A key issue at stake is whether the unanimous agreement of all teams is required for a mid-season entrant licence to be granted. The FIA, the sport’s governing body, has refused to comment officially on the situation.

In a separate but related development RaceFans understands the Mazepin consortium and associated company Uralkali could approach the British High Court to investigate the administration process, alleging the “process conducted by the administrator of Force India Formula One Team Limited may not be in the best interests of Force India creditors and stakeholders, and [F1] in general”.

Administrators FRP Advisory has defended the process, insisting “all bidders were given equal opportunity to submit the best deal for Force India.”

Sergio Perez insists it will be “business as usual” for Force India at this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix, though the team is unable to give assurances it will take part in the race.

A Force India spokesperson referred questions over whether it will compete this weekend to the FIA. Legal complications surrounding the purchase of the team’s assets by Lawrence Stroll have cast doubt on its participation in the race.

The team appeared at Spa on Thursday with the ‘Sahara Force India Formula One team’ branding absent from its motorhome, trucks and pit gantry. The names of sponsors linked to companies connected to former owner Vijay Mallya were also taken down (pictured).

However Perez told media including RaceFans he is “here to race” this weekend.

“This team, it’s a bit used to being in difficult situations,” he said. “We’re coming out of a difficult position and I think the team is always ready.

“We have great team members and the people back home are performing at the best. Everyone is very motivated which I have to thank everyone for.”

Perez was involved in initiating administration proceedings against the team during the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend. He said he hasn’t spoken to Mallya since.

“It’s been a busy time at the moment,” he explained. “But I think there will be good time once I’m back in London to have a chat. We are good friends.”

In a further change at Force India, deputy team principal Robert Fernley has stepped down from his position.

The changes in the team’s ownership will allow more developments to appear in coming races, Perez added.

“I think the team is quite optimistic with what happened. We can see a release on the upgrades coming for the future.

“We’ll see a different structure financially. The team has a much more stable future or the coming years. That can directly be linked to track performance.”

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