Mark Webber has likened the state of Formula 1’s new teams to a cartoon. But when intelligence reached my ears that not only are the two principals of USF1 no longer on speaking terms, but that one of them has been living in the Hilton Charlotte for over two months while trying to pacify an increasingly irate band of creditors, I was put more in mind of I’m Alan Partridge.
So while Peter Windsor subsists on room service while trying to clear up the mess that is USF1, Ken Anderson has been spouting cant to the press.
“The way the chips fell in January, that put us behind,” he told AUTOSPORT. “We were on schedule right up until mid-January, and that was when some issues arose with sponsors that kind of locked us up.”
Chips? Fell? What twaddle is this? Here’s how an F1 start-up works, Ken: sponsors and partners set certain key technical milestones, with deadlines, and when those are met – on deadline – hey presto! More money arrives.
And when I say “key technical milestones” I mean “actual bits of an F1 car, not just pictures of what they may look like”. It’s as simple as that.
Here’s another tip on how to get ahead in F1: if you’ve got a benevolent millionaire entrepreneur on board, share him with Bernie. Even just an introduction would do. A little more goodwill may have radiated from Princes Gate as a result.
The only hope left is to keep the entry notionally alive so that it can be sold to pay off the creditors, including some very angry Argentines; and the sorry legacy of this tawdry scenario is that the much-needed American F1 team and US Grand Prix now seem further away than ever. Still, the local Starbucks has done well out of it.