It is always nice to get well wishes from fans and equally it is nice to receive them from contemporaries or competitors. Martin Whitmarsh has given just that to Ken Anderson and Peter Windsor. Martin shared his thought with Autosport on USF1 and the lack of an F1 presence in North America today saying:
“The United States of America is clearly a crucial market for all Formula One’s car manufacturers – and for many of its sponsors, too,” Whitmarsh told autosport.com
“The fact that at the moment the Formula One calendar boasts no United States Grand Prix is therefore a great pity, and it goes without saying that all at McLaren Mercedes would applaud the return of the United States Grand Prix to the F1 calendar – either at Indianapolis or elsewhere.
“Indeed, a desire to reinstate the United States Grand Prix has recently been discussed during meetings of the FOTA commercial commission, which is headed up by Renault’s Flavio Briatore, so it would be fair to say that it’s something that’s already on the teams’ wish-list for the future – and I know that both the FIA and FOM are supportive of that collective wish.”
Speaking on the morning after plans for the new USF1 team were officially unveiled, Whitmarsh said he was fully behind the efforts of team principal Ken Anderson and sporting director Peter Windsor.
“A United States-based Formula One team, ideally fielding at least one United States-born driver, would be an excellent vehicle via which all Formula One stakeholders could make important promotional and commercial inroads into what remains the world’s biggest economy,” he said.
“For that reason alone, we at McLaren Mercedes applaud Peter Windsor’s and Ken Anderson’s efforts to set up their all-new USF1 team, and I’m sure the management of all Formula One teams feel the same way.
“It’s tough out there at the moment from a sponsorship-acquisition point of view, and it won’t therefore be easy for Peter and Ken – but I’m sure they both know that. What’s beyond doubt, though, is that such a project could only feasible as a result of the recent cost-cutting programme spearheaded by the FIA and FOTA.
“As I say, we wish USF1 well.”
While Martin feels F1 is poised to become a much bigger entity in America perhaps equally as interesting Martin mentions a ‘commercial commission’ group within FOTA. So they have organized into separate groups to address the different aspects of F1 and one of them is the Commercial Commissions group? Now this is getting really interesting isn’t it? I am going to say that F1B ‘predicts’ and can ‘exclusively’ reveal that FOTA is heading for an interesting power structure change in F1. The wheels are turning and while no one is talking much, the FIA, FOM and FOTA are heading for some serious moments of reflection and power control.