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Teams need six months notice for three-car teams

Formula One's contingency plan has always been for the established teams to revert to three cars to fill the grid.

It's always been seen as plan B for many, as a back-up plan has to be in place due to the volatile nature of finances in Formula One.

Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone actually prefers the idea of an 8-team competition of 24 cars, but the teams and crucially the fans have always been opposed to the idea.

But the problem is with the exception of the likes of Ferrari, McLaren and Williams, teams and manufacturers have always come and gone in Formula One.

Ferrari have been the ever present since 1950.

McLaren have been involved since 1966, whilst Williams made their debut in 1977.

Sauber have been involved in Formula One since 1993, racing between 1993 and 2005 before German manufacturer BMW took over the team.

They however pulled out of Formula One in 2009, forcing Peter Sauber to repurchase the team and the 'new' Sauber has been in F1 since 2010.

The Sauber team are probably the best example of just how complicated a teams history can be in Formula One. With the teams changing ownership hands on a fairly regular basis.

Quadruple Formula One World Champions Red Bull Racing actually only entered the fold in 2005 taking over from the old Stewart/Jaguar racing outfits.

Red Bull then created sister team Toro Rosso when they purchased the Minardi team in 2006.

Force India made their debut in 2008 after taking over the old Spyker team.

The Lotus name or brand has been well established in Formula One making its debut in 1958. But the current Lotus team is far from being the team established by Colin Chapman.

There are closer ties to the Toleman/Benetton team, but really the current team was formed in 2009 when Genii Capital purchased the outfit from Renault.

Whilst Mercedes almost share as long a history in motor-racing as Ferrari, making their debut in F1 in 1954 with the first Silver Arrows.

They didn't compete as a team between 1956 and 2009 and just acted as engine partners to the likes of Sauber and McLaren during the mid-1990's.

In 2010 the current Caterham and Marussia teams joined Formula One. They were both newbie teams and initially entered the sport under the names Lotus Racing and Virgin Racing.

Engine manufacturers also come and go with the likes of Ford, BMW, Peugeot and Toyota no longer involved in the sport, whilst Honda are set to return next season for the first time since 2008 when they withdrew as a manufacturer.

Formula One have to have a plan in case teams or suppliers pull out and with rumours surrounding the likes of Caterham, Marussia and Sauber contingency discussion have taken place.

'The chassis for the third car, the logistics, the people around ... we will need at least six months' notice,' McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier told BBC.

With the 2015 season set to start in March, that of course means that it looks like the plans have not got enough time to come to fruition of required.

Estimates suggest that the teams would need to spend 25million-per-year to run a third car, something that Force India owner Vijay Mallya has spoken out against.

'You can question many things about revenue, But if one day we are called and asked to help F1 by running three cars, then we will have to.' Boullier added.

Whilst Ecclestone said: 'We have a regulation that says if we lose three teams the other teams will run three cars, I would rather see Ferrari with three cars, or any of the other top teams with three cars, than having teams that are struggling.'

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The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday September 26 2014

Time: 10:13AM


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