March 18, 2015

Ecclestone hints Mercedes got extra help. Story disappears .

A bit of mystery surrounds an interview where Bernie Ecclestone apparently confirmed what many had been thinking, that Mercedes' success comes with more than a little help from the FIA.

"Mercedes knew more about the power unit because their engineers were in close contact with the FIA when the new engine concept was being defined"  Ecclestone is said told SkySport Italy.  the story was picked up by various sites and  the interview clip posted on SkySport's site but that video has since been if not deleted, certainly disabled.

What's going on here?

The story has gained enough traction to merit a response from Mercedes via twitter

That's not exactly what Bernie is reposted to have said is it?  Yes they all got the rules at the same time once they were written, Mr.E hints Mercedes had a bit more influence/knowledge as to how those rules were going to be written.

The obvious question is, where were the Ferrari and Renault engineers also part of the working group?

It's clear there has been a long term plan to bring Mercedes on top of the sport and such a plan, one can rest assured, was not an FIA plan, it was a Bernie plan.   From the engine regulations to bringing Hamilton to the team to the "secret tests".   Bernie's fingerprints are all over this.     Now Mr.E wants to make his other customers happy,   first Vettel lands at Ferrari and now the series cannot afford to lose Red Bull money, so the boss calls for a power shakeup.

Will it work?   You would think Ferrari would be on board but they must be confident in the progress they have made.   Red Bull is complaining but Renault is not, that also is interesting.

So why has the story been buried?  The reporter,  Antonio Boselli,  a very good journalist. has been mute about it.   It is possible he got it wrong and backtracked but is it impossible to think someone asked him a favor he could not refuse?

F1 is a shark tank, swim at your own risk but remember, it's not always the tallest fish who's the most vicious!


  1. Let's just rename Formula 1 to Formula B (for Bernie). Things happen only when he wants them to happen and the FIA at this point in time is just another part of his scheme. Too bad the Formula E (Ecclestone) name has been taken.

  2. I doubt the rest of the teams does not know about this if it is true.

    Maybe is time to get back to the f1 free for all and no stock cost cutting politics....
    Honda will be rebuilding the entire engine in weeks like the did on the past to be able to fight the Mercs.

  3. Easy, build car with both left and right hand drive. One side with standard controls and the other configured for Zanardi.

  4. I have a related question, as I am not familiar with all details of the teams' contracts with F1, especially RBR. I've been reading about the 'threats' to leave the sport. But I also read somewhere that RBR has a contract with Bernie E./F1 until 2020. But I also read that they can 'sell' the team. First, can they sell the team? Second, If they do, why would F1 lose RBR money? Because an outfit with less funds would purchase it and be a back marker bringing in less viewership? Someone please enlighten me. Thanks!

  5. only that Red Bull has been sinking a huge budget into F1 in terms of the two teams, sponsorship of drivers (across many series) and generally has put on quite a show at every race. Just think of the floating Red Bull Energy station in Monaco!

  6. I have been a follower of F1 for 20 years now (probably a novice compared to other readers) and I definitely appreciate the efforts Mr. Ecclestone has brought to the sport. He gave the sport the recognition it deserved and helped consolidate races, teams, drivers and sponsors into a package.

    I think, the time has come for a reincarnation of the sport. Viewers and fans need to be at the forefront, manufacturers must consider F1 as a pinnacle (Le Mans has more respect amongst manufacturers right now). Is it time to bring in some fresh young minds into the governance of the sport. Maybe the reign of the old moghuls is bring the sport down. And I am not talking about Briatore or Mosley or Arrivabane or even Christian Horner. Someone fresh who can really view the sport from an outsiders perspective and shun the politics and nepotism that seems to have plagued the sport in recent time.

    What do you guys think? How do the fans actually get a say in the governance of their beloved sport before it just becomes a reminiscing thought.

  7. Inspiring story. Thanks for posting!

  8. I honestly don't really care anymore. The formula is a mess, DRS, Control Tires etc. It's all about WEC and Moto GP for me these days.

  9. I remember seeing that quote a couple days ago and thinking it was a little fishy. But if the journalist that reported it is typically legit, I'd be inclined to believe it.

    Now I don't know the original context of the comment, so, as somebody who worked in journalism for almost 10 years before turning to the marketing side, I feel like this could have gone one of two ways.

    Most likely, it was just a misrepresentation of what was said or Bernie misspoke in giving people the idea that Mercedes was developing a PU from the start. Doesn't mean that Merc didn't have head start, but that's probably how they'll paint it. Less likely, the F1 mob shut the story down by refusing future access to either that particular journalist or SkySports Italy.

  10. right but then is A) then Boselli should have just cleared it up on twitter. I'm guessing it a) via b)! :)

  11. I'm very surprised there was no dig at Lewis in this article about Mercedes. Your hate is slipping AC!

  12. It's the same as their illegal tyre test. I'd bet that test was about the 2014 tyre direction for construction.This created a "bespoke tyre" for Merc in effect. This is the other part of the puzzle as to why they're so good. They knew what the tyre was going to do and engineered the car for it. The only mistake they made in the entire W-05 was in the rear brakes,and there's a good chance Lewis's known insistance on particular brakes had something to do with it. Lewis was still at McLaren when the car was first being designed,so there might've been changes post the original design concept.

  13. Consider the circumstances of Hamilton's move from McLaren to Mercedes in 2012. That year, McLaren won seven races, four of which went to Hamilton. Mercedes won only one race in spite of having a very tricky rear wing. Then suddenly Hamilton decides he'd rather be at Mercedes, and hints repeatedly that he's moving because he believes Mercedes will become the leading constructor. He's no engineer. He didn't make that decision based on his own analysis of Mercedes' engine plans. It's more logical to infer he knew Mercedes had some other kind of predictable advantage such as being favored by FOM. I don't have any other evidence that this was the case, but it's the only explanation that fits that otherwise inexplicable fact.

  14. tempting to wonder if Alonso had a similar bird whisper in his ear :)


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