Formula One gets Made in America
Evidence of the troubled economy has spread to the seemingly immune sport of Formula One racing. Recently Honda decided to pull out of the series and the fate of involvement from other top manufacturers like Renault remain questionable. The governing body of the sport has even floated the idea of allowing some teams to run an extra car during each race to fill the grid. So it comes as a surprise that news broke yesterday of a secret new team being put together by a group of Americans to debut in 2010. An official launch is scheduled for later this month.
The new team will be called USF1 and is lead by F1 broadcaster Peter Windsor and Ken Anderson, who spent time in both the IndyCar and NASCAR series. Windsor earlier in his career worked for both Williams and Ferrari.
Most interesting about this new team is that it will be headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina. The heart of NASCAR country. F1 and NASCAR tend to be characterized as existing at opposite ends of the technology scale in terms of racing. The team has already inked an agreement to use the new Windshear rolling wind tunnel, critical for developing the new car’s aerodynamics.
USF1 intends to be a showcase for American technology and will select US-born drivers to compete. The team will use the slogan ‘Made In America’. USF1 also opens the potential for many American manufacturers to get involved as component suppliers which could create jobs.
2007 was the last time the Formula One series raced in the US at Indianapolis. Negotiations have been ongoing since to try to bring the series back. One of the biggest hurdles has been securing sponsorship. But having an established US-based team will likely aid in bringing F1 back to the states.
[via F1 Live]