Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Malaysia’s own F1 team
Oh My God! That was my first reaction when I heard rumours about Malaysia wanting to have a F1 team. I fainted when the news came true. This is the last thing that we need. There are so many reasons why we shouldn't just jump into it like this.
I am so pissed off that these people actually thought about it. The first and most important reason that we shouldn't jump into this is because it was thought up, run by and will controlled by politicians. Like most Malaysian sports, it will be fucked up because these people are in charge.
Secondly, we have no racing history and knowledge to speak of. There are not that many Malaysians trained and with experience in motorsports of any level. We don't even have a proper grassroots program. The absence of such a program speaks volumes of the government's commitment to motorsports. What makes them think they can just create a F1 entry and become successful at it?
Thirdly, the Malaysian government's attitude is not like other countries especially Dubai where they get the best for the best results and give full control and creative freedom to achieve the targets. The Malaysian government is too scared to give freedom to the people assigned to do their jobs. Just look at how the many talks between Proton and VW that have failed. This attitude is what is hampering foreign investments and growth in this country.
Looking at the proposed structure of the F1 team, Mike Gascoyne has been made Technical Director but not Team Principal. That job goes to Tony Fernandes. See what I mean by control? Gascoyne will be frustrated within 6 months at all the bureaucracy bullshit and the team will get nowhere.
As a follower of F1, even without in depth knowledge of how the sport operates, I know that even with 1 element out of place the team will not succeed at much. The Malaysian team is the other way around, they probably only have 1 element that is working and not the rest. This looks like another huge waste of money again, something which the Malaysian politicians are so good at. They just want the glamour.
Another thing, the announcement came so fast that the Malaysian team has been accepted into the 2010 Championship ignoring other established and deserving teams like Prodrive. Even the BMW entry has been given the cold shoulder and might be considered later as a 14th entry. What does that tell you? That means that Bernie has some of my money already. How did Malaysia suddenly have so much influence at the FIA and FOM?
I'm really lost for words for these people. Something is wrong when they announced the entry and Petronas was not there. Petronas has years of experience being a sponsor of a team in F1 and they are missing. What does that tell you about this venture? Petronas not being around also means that the taxpayer is footing the bill.
I won't be saying that I'm from Malaysia anymore when I join online F1 forums from now on. Of course I want my national team to do well but this effort is just about glamour and sucking money from the country. The money is better spent on developing a national grassroots program starting with go karts. Somehow I just can't see it working out. And Lotus has a prestigious pedigree in F1, these people better not screw that up.