It has been announced today that the FIA has launched a new selection process that could bring a new Formula 1 team onto the grid as early as 2016.
Potential candidates must approach the FIA by June 30, after which they will be sent more detailed selection criteria, with full applications due by September 1 ahead of a final decision on September 30.
A statement from the FIA said a decision would be made based on “the overall long-term interests of the championship”, and it will not select an additional team if there is no viable candidate.
The FIA said it would assess:
- The technical ability and resources of the team
- The ability of the team to raise and maintain sufficient funding to allow participation in the championship at a competitive level
- The team’s experience and human resources
- The value the candidate may bring to the championship as a whole
American outfit Haas F1 will become the 11th team when it joins next year, while an additional entrant would return the grid to 12 squads for the first time since the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix.
Before NASCAR team boss Gene Haas’ entry was confirmed last year, F1 tsar Bernie Ecclestone had suggested two new teams could join the grid; but has not said who these teams are.
Since Sochi last year, the largest grid has been 20 cars, as the Caterham team folded over the winter while Marussia has undergone a phoenix-like revival as the Manor team and managed to exit administration earlier this year.
But overall, I do think that the FIA have given this matter some serious thought and the selection process is logical and common sense. However, even though as much as some of us would like a new team in F1, the fact of the matter is that it will be difficult for any potential new team to enter a sport where competing never mind winning is at a significant cost.
Unless potential new teams can demonstrate that they have solid financial foundations in place to stay racing in the sport for at least 3-5 years which in my opinion will take a team to get to the level of winning races and championships; I don’t think we will see any new teams enter the sport after Gene Haas in 2016.
All I say is that in his economic world we now live in; its getting harder and harder to gain investment or even raise the money needed to survive and sustain themselves in whatever field you are in. To commit to a project like F1 needs time, investment, patience and personnel to get to a position to recoup everything and if you haven’t got that, then you will be spat up and chewed out quicker than anything.
And if you haven’t got the resources, you cannot survive or plan what you would like to do in life; its a shame but that is the world we live in now and no matter how much you want something, if you haven’t got what you need, you have to do without, even though F1 may not need that right now, but it is true and that is racing. Pure and simple.