Where does Force India loss reduction leave Hulkenberg?

I’m not saying I am good at predictions but I wonder if today’s story about Force India’s financial loss in 2015 could have some earmarks of future moves at the team. The ugly part of the story is that the team reduced its loss from £15.4m in 2014 to £6.8m in 2015. On one hand you could say that’s great, quite a reduction but not when there is still a big loss. You typically don’t measure an organization’s performance on how big the loss is.

On the other hand, and increase in revenue was to blame for the reduction in losses year-on-year. They increased from £59.92m in 2014 to £64.26m in 2015 in statements for the year ending on December 31. Part of that was due to their performance in the constructor’s championship netting them a 12% gain in prize money to be paid out over the course of this year.

The other reason listed was “a cash injection ahead of a significant regulation changes for the 2017 season”. This came in the form of a multi-year development driver deal in the form of Russian Nikita Mazepin. The story closes with the team’s commentary on future sponsor and cash infusion from “…sponsorship revenues from the Russian market, while building future deals with both the Mexican and domestic markets.”

Now, not to be dramatic here but if that’s the case, clearly Mazepin and Perez are secure and this doesn’t leave much room for German Nico Hulkenberg does it? If I were Nico, I might be making a few phone calls because some of that Russian money could come with the stipulation that Nikita is in the car for the races. Also, Force India isn’t doing as well as it had hoped in 2016 so the prize money may be less in the future.

Not saying it’s happening but if Nico isn’t at the team next season, I think I may know why.

Hat Tip: AUTOSPORT

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

21 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Tom Firth

Given Nikita Mazepin’s racing record so far, particularly this year, both on and off the track… I think Hulk is rather safe for a while. Nikita’s super license points at current are nil.

Negative Camber

Well, I didn’t say I had the inside line here but I wonder if this means the team is looking for more Russian backers and that could leave door open for Kvyat or eventually Mazepin but he’d have to get the SL in hand before taking to seat obviously. Could be a two-year deal but things seem to happen quickly when a big check from a sponsor comes. :)

Negative Camber

And speaking of, what is Petrov doing these days? Does he still have a SL?

Tom Firth

Petrov, WEC with SMP Racing. I spoke to him very briefly at Silverstone. I don’t know if he will still have a superlicense, been a while and doesn’t need it for LMP2 and didn’t for DTM.

Tom Firth

Quite honestly he’s racing with SMP in WEC, because Aleshin has gone back to America to do Indycar. It would be Mikhail Aleshin’s seat otherwise.

Tom Firth

Agreed, that are probably looking for russian backers. I mean I don’t Mazepin getting the nod, as I don’t see how he’s going to get a superlicense in 2 years really, given his results so far. That said is lots of Russian investment in motorsport today, SMP Bank have put a huge amount into sportscars, Indycar and Sirotkin in F1 through Renault. then have LADA in WTCC, Russian Time in GP2, it is only a matter of time before get two decent Russian talents in the series. I’d reckon its more likely to be Kvyat and Sirotkin if looking for… Read more »

Alianora La Canta

Nikita Mazepin is not going to be ready for F1 until 2018 at the earliest, and I suspect that is optimistic, because he’s not likely to get many points from his F3 performances (and certainly no brownie points). Jehan Daruvala is slightly more dangerous to Nico Hulkenberg’s chances, as the “One From A Billion” winner is on a better trajectory and is looking good to score serious Superlicence points when he gets to F3 level next year. Nico’s main worries would be from someone losing out from the swaperoo in the higher teams, and Diageo preferring a different driver. Force… Read more »

Negative Camber

So we think this is a two-year deal at best. If I were Kvyat and I knew FI was wooing some Russian sponsors, I’d make a phone call. :)

the Late Idi Armin

Diaego?

Tom Firth

The giant Brewery company that owns United spirits, a part of the UB group, which Mallya owned wholly, and I think still owns some of?

I’m not sure Diageo actually still own part of UB itself or just the spirits part when it split. I thought they sold the UB Group part to Heineken, who now own the majority of it but keep Mallya as chairman. Alianora?

Tom Firth

Not certain they would unload it. It’s a rather good advertising platform for its brands, and it’s not like beverage companies don’t have an interest in owning or sponsoring motor racing teams now is it?

longshot

Aston Martin are in cahoots with Red Bull now – FI will have to look elsewhere for a buyer.

charlie white

With all this Russian money and drivers flowing in and out some team paddocks, I’m surprised one or some of these wealth individuals simply pool their resources and just buy a team. Or are there memories of the former Midland F1 team fresh in their minds?

Tom Firth

Technically Marussia was Russian, sort of.

Are rumours, albeit not very strong ones that Rotenberg is looking at buying an F1 team as well.

Shocks&Awe

I’ve had the impression that Hulk DNFs a lot, so I started doing some research. In 100 GPs he’s DNFd 15 times, that’s 15% for the mathematically challenged (like me). Perez 14%, Alonso (in the same period) 14%, Ricciardo 11% (10 fewer races). Hamilton 13%.

So really not that far off from everyone else.

And since I knew you would ask… Maldonado: 30% LOL.

longshot

It depends on the reason for the DNF. For a fair comparision you’d have to rule out all mechanical failures, plus instances where the driver was taken out by someone else & blameless in the collision – otherwise the DNF percentage is meaningless.

Edit: And I did have the impression that Hulk was making more mistakes over the last couple of years than most drivers with his experience, but its very hard to go back & verify that after the fact.

Shocks&Awe

I wasn’t really looking for a fair comparison, actually. I was looking for evidence that Hulkenberg was an albatross.

Also you might argue that with enough season’s everyone’s mechanical DNF’s somewhat cancel each other out and the outliers are the one’s tipping the scales with bad moves. Not that I have the data to support this… it’s just conjecture.

longshot

Well, I do know for sure that Hulk’s pretty lazy when it comes to checking whether his front wing is bolted on properly ;)

You’d think albatrosses would be more careful looking after their wings…

Marcio Ribeiro

Nico’s days in F1 may be counted. Right now, his chances of a move are limited to Williams, Renault and Haas. Williams or Renault would be a clear move upwards, but I have my doubts they’d be interested. Now on the other hand, Haas has spoke very highly of Nico earlier this year. Depending on the kind of deal they have with Ferrari regarding Gutierrez; and considering the Mexican has yet to show himself competitive against his teammate, I’d say Hulkenberg may find a home at Haas. Pure speculation on my part. But that’s the sense I make of his… Read more »

longshot

Gutierrez is at Haas due to the amount of sponsorship money he brings, not because he’s a competitive driver. Hulk won’t get a seat there unless he can raise a similar amount of cash, or Haas decide they don’t need the money & would prefer 2 good drivers instead of one.

Marcio Ribeiro

I believe you are mistaken. Yes Gutierrez does have sponsorship money, but the reason he’s at Haas is not that. It’s because Haas and Ferrari’s agreement includes the use of one of Ferrari’s reserve drivers. JEV is French and so is Grosjean (actually he’s Swiss but race’s under french flag) so Gutierrez got the gig. Considering what’s been said in interviews, Gene Haas doesn’t seem to concern this season with sponsorship money. The car will continue clean for a while.