Thursday, June 11, 2009

What Fresh Hell?

Le Mans 24 Hours June 13-14 2009

Where the big dogs go when they get off the porch.

taken from

The organizers of the Le Mans 24 Hours have thrown the door open for any of Formula 1’s manufacturers to compete in the French classic – and they have even been offered the chance to help shape future regulations.
F1 teams are due to meet with FIA president Max Mosley today in an attempt to reach a last-minute agreement ahead of the publication of the entry list for 2010 tomorrow morning. Several of the manufacturers have been linked to sports car programs if they go through with their threats not to enter Formula 1 next year.
Piero Ferrari, son of marque founder Enzo, has mentioned Le Mans as a potential avenue for the team, and Toyota is also believed to be interested in a return to the 24 Hours 10 years after its last appearance at the event with its GT-One car.
ACO general manager Remy Brouard says Le Mans would welcome F1 manufacturers returning to sports car racing and insists that Le Mans’ governing body is open to suggestions from manufacturers on future regulations. When asked about the number of manufacturers involved in the 24 Hours, Brouard said: “There is no ideal figure, the more the better. They [the Formula 1 teams] are welcome here. If they want to make proposals, we will listen.”
Brouard would not comment on which manufacturers, if any, had been in contact with the ACO about possible entry to the event.
Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo will be the official starter of this year’s race on Saturday, and two-time World Champion Fernando Alonso is also due to attend after admitting his interest in competing in the event in the future.
Renault and BMW have also had success as past winners of the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1978 and 1999, respectively.

After last-ditch talks aimed at bringing an end to the stand-off between the FIA and the Formula 1 Teams’ Association ended inconclusively on Thursday afternoon, all eyes are now on how many of the current teams will be on the entry list, to be released by the governing body on Friday.
FIA president Max Mosley met in London with four representatives of FOTA – Ferrari’s Stefano Domenicali, Brawn GP’s Ross Brawn, Red Bull Racing’s Christian Horner and Toyota’s John Howett – in order to try and thrash out an 11th hour deal that will keep all the current teams committed. But although there was no public confirmation that the two sides had edged any closer to a deal, there were suggestions that FOTA and the FIA were not totally at loggerheads on a way forward.
One source compared the situation to the black or white smoke signals given off by the Vatican during the election process of a new Pope. “There is gray smoke tonight,” he said.
In recent days there has been more talk of a compromise deal, with Mosley indicating in a recent letter to Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo that the FIA would be ready to scrap the two-tier F1 plans, and sign a Concorde Agreement, if teams agreed to a 100-million-euro ($141m) budget cap for 2010, prior to it being reduced to £40 million ($66m) the following year.
As to what happens with the entry list announcement on Friday, no one outside of the FIA’s circles is sure about what will happen. Williams and Force India are certain to be on it, having lodged unconditional entries, and it should not be too difficult for the FIA to find at least three new teams to fill the available slots on the grid. However, which of the remaining current outfits is on the entry list will determine where F1 is heading in both the next few weeks and perhaps the longer term.
Should the entries of the eight remaining FOTA members – Ferrari, McLaren, BMW Sauber, Renault, Toyota, Scuderia Toro Rosso, Red Bull Racing and Brawn – be rejected, then it could be the signal for those teams to accelerate their plans for a breakaway championship. There would also likely be huge controversy should the FIA choose to put Ferrari, and perhaps the two Red Bull teams, on the entry list unconditionally – if the governing body stood by the belief that some teams have contractually tied themselves into racing in F1.
One way of defusing the tension, however, would be for the FIA to hand provisional entries to all of FOTA’s outfit – pending the successful resolution of talks aimed at reducing costs.
Ferrari has made no secret of the fact that it will only race in F1 if it is happy with the rules – and the announcement of the entry list comes ahead of a visit to Le Mans by di Montezemolo and the Scuderia’s team principal Stefano Domenicali. In a statement issued on Thursday, di Montezemolo made a clear hint that the challenge of Le Mans would be enough to attract the Maranello team in the future.
“I am delighted to be given the opportunity to start a race that has made motor racing history and has such strong links with Ferrari,” he said. “Our Scuderia has delivered some unforgettable achievements on this circuit. The Le Mans 24-Hour Race is synonymous with technologically advanced sporting competition and has always been a focus of great attention on our part.”
The other interest in the entry list will come with which of the new outfits is granted a place on the 2010 grid. Among the leading contenders to be given the nod are Prodrive, Campos Racing, Epsilon Euskadi, Lola, Superfund, USF1 and Team Lotus.

Oh by the Way - this is Max Mosley on his off hours.

He walked away from the scandal. Of course the scandal dungeon is only a block away from his flat. His wife of 40 plus years is ok with it. And another thing he got 5 hookers for 5000.00 USD, while the governor of New York only got one Hooker for $ 5ooo.oo. Health care is cheaper in UK.

Let's see what tomorrow brings.


  1. I agree Spitzer got ripped off. But then we really don't know what he got for his money either. He may have been covered in batter and dipped in oil, fried, dyed and smoked as a ham, all of which would have taken a lot of effort for just one girl.

  2. Excellent point Walking M, I stand enlightened.

  3. The one equation that always seems to be missing from F1 conversations is profit for the local sponsor. I think the main reason for the money cap is so that governments et al don't have to shell out hundreds of millions for a event which is clearly unsustainable. The same thing can be said about most professional sports world-wide and particularly the NFL.

    I would like to see the manufacturers jump to the LeMans series and leave F1 more wide-open for the creative privateers who don't bring with them all of the ulterior motives and politics the money machines do. There's a lot of talk about Indy becoming the free-for-all it once was. I'm convinced that at some point, the amount of money generated by a sport ruins it. Dumbs it down. Disney-izes it to where it all becomes the same homogenized Mac-shit.

    It's ultimately the biggest problem with democratic consumerism... finally, in an effort to appeal to the most people, the whole thing melts down to the lowest common denominator... which is flat fucking boring.

  4. MR. C. make a very good point and you are correct about Disney, they do own the Indy track. Could be one reason F1 does not run there anymore, that and the hospitality or lack thereof.
    The problem with Indy, in my view is that it is coming from the circus maximus and horses that can only run in circles. F1 and Le Mans are based on road and street courses begun after the advent of the automobile. That is the attraction for this ol' boy. Perhaps the steeplechase had some influence upon the sport.
    Americans never had to chase steeples until the last few years. (chuckle)

  5. I dunno. I think the country was founded on chasing steeples wasn't it? Maybe I've got it backwards, maybe the country was founded by people running from steeples. Makes more sense.

    Actually, the road course paradigm in Europe was probably founded because originally, only the very rich could afford the cars to race and they were out for "sport" and raced on public roads and didn't give much of a damn about trifles such as public safety. Even today, Spa, Monaco and Le Mans are still raced on public roads.

    And, Indy style circular racing wasn't begun because of any affinity for public safety either, but good ole Yankee ingenuity as the owners of the track found a way to utilize it when the State Fair moved and the horse racing declined. As you can see, it worked.


Gems of thought


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email, love being alive, the alterntiative has lousy hours, liberal and don't care if you give me cracked corn.