Join Date: May 2004
Location: Behind the steering wheel
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The Formula One world has been turned upside down by Honda's decision to pull out of the sport effective immediately.
Efforts are being made to find an outside buyer for the team as a going concern. In effect, Honda is willing to give it away--as Ford did with the Jaguar team in 2004--as long as the new owner has blue-chip backing and can guarantee that it can cover future operating costs.
The Honda decision happened very quickly in the course of this week, and was confirmed at a press conference in Tokyo on Friday morning.
Like other motor manufacturers, Honda has been forced to make cuts in all areas, but it was regarded as the least likely to quit the sport. Honda's involvement stretches, on and off, back to 1964. The company has always used F1, not just for marketing purposes, but for genuine engineering reasons as well.
Company president Takeo Fukui said: "Honda must protect its core business activities and secure the long term as widespread uncertainties in the economics around the globe continue to mount. We will enter into consultation with associates of Honda Racing F1 and its engine supplier Honda Racing Development regarding the future of the two companies. This will include offering the team for sale."
Honda had two disastrous seasons in 2006 and 2007, coinciding with its eco-friendly "Earth dreams" campaign. The cars ran without any overt Honda identification, leading skeptics to wonder just what the company was gaining from the arrangement.
The Toyotas of Timo Glock will start Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix from the back of the grid after stewards found their cars to be in contravention of the rules. They had qualified sixth and eighth respectively.
A post-qualifying inspection by the FIA found the TF109s’ to have ‘extreme flexibility’ in their rear wings, thus breaking Formula One racing’s technical regulations. Glock’s and Trulli’s qualifying times were cancelled as a result.
|Hmm... that's great about the race being closer and more competitive. Did they have anything to say about the size of the attendance?|
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