"One intriguing rumour to surface over the Christmas period is the suggestion that Honda Racing F1's Ross Brawn may have been talking seriously to Michael Schumacher about working together to save the Brackley team. Schumacher has plenty of private money but it is unrealistic to believe that anyone will spend their own cash to pay the running costs of an F1 team. However, the Schumacher name does have a great deal of clout in the commercial world and it is possible, although rather unlikely in the current financial climate, that his involvement in a team could bring in the kind of money needed to run Honda for the next couple of years. This would give the team the opportunity to show an improvement in performance and allow the global economy to rebound and would perhaps end up being a sound investment for him."
"The grid looks like being at least two cars light next season, sponsorship is going to be hard to come by for at least a year or two and the pressure on the carmakers' balance sheets is going to grow. After all, where is the magic of Ferrari when the classifieds tell you the value of a used 559 has just tanked? And it's not just F1: rallying lost two manufacturers in two days, Subaru and Suzuki, a huge blow for a sport that is struggling for exposure."
"Henry Surtees, whose father John remains the only man to win World Championships on two and four wheels, has signed up to compete in the 2009 FIA Formula Two Championship."
New motor racing blog by Scott Woddwiss.
"Peter Boland of Birch Road, Onehouse near Stowmarket is due to appear at a tribunal in Southampton after claiming he was sacked because fellow staff thought he was gay. He had worked on Mr Dennis's private jet but claims he was fired without notice in 2007. However at last year's hearing Jane Mulcahy representing the companies told the panel that Mr Boland had been sacked after he fell asleep on the plane while on duty."
"Ferrari sources say that rumours linking the company's development of KERS with the Peugeot sportscar team are not to be taken seriously. The stories, which seem to have begun in the United States, suggest that Peugeot will run the Ferrari F1 KERS system on a 908 development car. The suggestion is that this would circumvent the F1 testing ban, which comes into effect at the first race in March."
The RB5, powered by a Renault engine, will take to the Jerez circuit on 9 February.
"It is time for both of them [Mosley and Ecclestone] to go. The old argument that only they know what is good for the sport no longer holds any water; the results of their greed are now becoming apparent and it becomes clear that the actual beneficiaries of their reign have been themselves, not F1."
It is thought that Red Bull boss Dietrich Mateschitz's decision to work with Volkswagen is a careful plan to align the two firms in the hope that one day it will provide him with engines for Formula 1. VW continues to say that there is no intention of any move to F1 in the foreseeable future, but with a more cost-effective F1 and the likelihood of an eventual economic upturn in the years ahead, nothing is impossible.
Ferrari's team manager Luca Baldisserri told Italian newspaper La Stampa that the team were confident they had eradicated any problems with their pitstop lights. "We've analysed the mistakes made in 2008 and we've improved the system," he said. "An electronic program will prevent the car from leaving when the fuel hose is still attached."
"Champion Formula 3 Euro Series team ART Grand Prix have confirmed Esteban Gutierrez as the first of their four drivers for the coming season." Gutierrez won the F1-supporting Formula BMW Europe championship last year. But he lost for Formula BMW world title race to Alezander Rossi.
"It is not fair that people are losing their jobs in the F1 industry when drivers are being paid as much as $50m a year. Their talents are valuable, but so too are the talents of the people who will be losing their jobs. Young men do not need $50m a year. They can live comfortably for the rest of their lives with considerably less than that. If teams must lose people, it is only fair that drivers should make sacrifices as well."
"The Renault driver's plane made contact with a building before take-off, damaging one of its wings. Alonso, his wife and the rest of the passengers and crew are fine."
Ugly Benettons, mutating Fortis, weird Ferraris.
"Stewart has other gripes with Ecclestone. He believes it to be “ridiculous” that there will be no grand prix in North America this year, after Ecclestone cancelled successively Indianapolis and Montreal, given the importance of that market to the big car manufacturers, oil and fuel producers and tyre manufacturers."
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