I was browsing through the photos on my hard driver and stumbled upon images of this nice little aircraft. Back in May Honda announced it began taking orders for its small executive jets – the HondaJet. They also revealed name of their first European customer – Honda Formula One driver Jenson Button. Button placed orders for two HondaJets, priced at USD3.9 million each, for an aviation charter business he plans to form.
The Global Rumour Manufacturing agency quoted yesterday anonymous source telling one Belgian publication that PSA Peugeot Citroen is a thinking about buying the F1 team from Honda.
The speculations connecting Sebastien Bourdais and even Citroen WRC driver Sebastien Loeb with the drive in the new British based French F1 team running Italian (Ferrari) or English (Cosworth) engines followed.
Red Bullog had a post on Red Bull’s junior driver Robert Wickens signing up for the 2009 Formula 2 championship. The first thought I had was how can Red Bull afford yet another open wheeler series. So, I did some quick math. I used the 2008 Red Bull F1 budgets as listed by Keith, the Formula 2 cost as listed on F2 website and did some currency conversions:
The voting for the 2008 Driver of the Year has ended. There were total 1093 votes in the poll and 24 more votes below the award post with top 3 drivers. The bonus points for top three made the margins at the top a bit bigger but at the end they haven’t affected the final order at all. There were 20 drivers included in the poll and every driver received some points. Here are the results:
The entire last week was about cost saving and testing. Fortunately Sunday night also provided some great fun.
Early last week rumours started to circulate that all four independent team plus Renault are to sign up for the budget Cosworth engine from 2010. There was a Thursday deadline for the teams to make up their minds. But after Friday’s WMSC meeting it seems that the deadline has been extended till December 20, 2008. Renault issued some careful statement refusing claims they are going against FOTA but failed to deny they are thinking about switching to Cosworth engines from 2010. For 2009 however they were allowed to rework their frozen Renault engine in order to catch up with the better rest.
While Honda F1 team members still lick the exit wounds the rest took to the test tracks last week. Toyota did some behind the close doors running in Bahrain, the others went to Jerez. I will prepare the December testing summary after this week testing is over but here are at least some brief notes:
The annual Race of Champions is on today at Wembley Stadium. You can (could) watch the live video here, now you can see the highlights:
Only few days after Vijay Mallya casted doubts on job security of his current drivers the Force India F1 team confirmed (yet again) that Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil will keep their race driver seats for next season. Vitantonio Liuzzi will continue as a test driver.
The Formula 1 cost saving measures agreed on by FOTA were rubber stamped by the World Motor Sport Council last Friday in Monaco. But let’s look at few things that either were not discussed or were not decided on:
1) 2009 Formula One Calendar
Fans of Lewis Hamilton have had their chance to get Lewis Hamilton 2008 World Championship die cast presentation for several weeks already. Now the 1:18 scale die cast model of Felipe Massa’s Ferrari F2008 is available too.
A lot was going on in Monaco on Friday the 12th. World Motor Sport Council was busy rubber stamping the cost saving measures, the winners of 2008 championships were busy collecting their trophies. Here are few photos from 2008 FIA Prize Giving Gala. I think Hamilton is wearing exactly the same outfit he had on when I bumped into him in the hotel lift in Monaco in 2007 :
So, now we know what the “the most successful meeting on Formula 1 matters which any of the participants can remember” brought. Here is the list of agreed cost saving measures for 2009 season and those proposed for 2010 and beyond with few comments:
Things can change very quickly in Formula One …
October 17, 2008, Shanghai, Vijay Mallya
“I’ve made it pretty clear that I am happy with both our drivers Adrian (Sutil) and Giancarlo (Fisichella) and they will continue with us in 2009.”
December 11, 2008, Vijay Mallya to BBC: