The financial consequences of the Corona crisis for formula 1 were already noticeable in the first quarter with a decrease in revenue by 84 percent. As the teams are directly involved in the revenues through the prize money, the loss also hits them hard. The concern for the future of some teams is great.
For other sources of money are no longer as strong as before, given the Corona crisis. Otmar Szafnauer, Racing Point’s team leader, therefore fears that manufacturers will in future want to concentrate on the road vehicle business rather than keep their Formula One programs running.
The thing with the manufacturers, not so much in Formula One, but in their regular business of development, The construction and sale of road vehicles is this: It is a very, very expensive business,”Szafnauer says in an interview with”Sky Sports F1″. Their fixed costs are enormous.
Sale of cars is more important than racing
The harder they hit the crisis: “If she catches you at a point in the life cycle of your cars where you have just invested billions and billions of dollars and now hope to keep a part back by selling cars, But what does not happen, in my opinion, could have a major impact.”
Any major car manufacturer would now have to ask himself whether racing really is his daily bread.” No, he’s not, the sale of cars is,”said Szafnauer. The Racing Point team leader knows what he’s talking about, because he’s been through exactly what he’s been through with Honda.
He was their director of strategy and business planning in formula 1, when the brand withdrew from sport at the end of the season 2008, triggered by the economic crisis. Szafnauer remembers “that Honda waited as long as they could because they did not want to withdraw from racing at the time”.
Memories of Honda’s Formula One retreat
“But unfortunately 2008 simply looked as if the financial crisis would not end, and it looked like this, as if their car sales would never recover. When sales finally stabilized, the manufacturer was able to return.
Szafnauer expects a similar scenario under the current circumstances: “We will get over it. The car sales will recover, there may be a need to catch up, but we will survive this.”In the meantime, it is especially important”that we start racing as soon as possible”.